Reform leader: Ask GOP candidates about gun violence

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — Union for Reform Judaism President Rabbi Rick Jacobs called on Jewish Republican leaders to ask the party’s presidential candidates about gun violence.

Jacobs made the call in an open letter to the Republican Jewish Coalition on Thursday, the day of the RJC’s forum for all 14 GOP presidential candidates.

In the letter addressed to David Flaum, the RJC national chairman, and Matthew Brooks, its executive director, Jacobs called on the organization to ask each candidate what they would do to end the “epidemic” of American gun violence.

“As you know, yesterday’s brutal slaughter of 14 people in San Bernardino is, to our great national shame, only the latest mass shooting. There is certainly room for disagreement about the best way to end gun violence. But I hope we can all agree that there is no room for disagreement that the status quo is flatly unacceptable,” Jacobs wrote.

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He added that it is an “appropriate issue” for the American Jewish community.

“(T)oday you have a tremendous opportunity to show all Americans that the Jewish community is committed to being part of a solution to the scourge of gun violence. I urge you as strongly as I can, please do not allow the candidates to appear today without telling us how they will stem this bloody tide,” Jacobs wrote.

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