Report: Obama weighed clemency for Pollard, but Biden vehemently opposed move
New York Times quotes U.S. vice president as saying that convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard would be released 'over my dead body'.
“President Obama was considering clemency, but I told him, ‘Over my dead body are we going to let him out before his time.’ If it were up to me, he would stay in jail for life,” U.S. Vice President Joe Biden was quoted as saying during a meeting with rabbis in Florida in a New York Times article published on Saturday.
The Times article reported that U.S. President Barack Obama has turned to Biden to shore up support amongst U.S. Jews.
"As Mr. Obama confronts his re-election challenge and the prospect of fracturing support among core constituencies, he is relying increasingly on Mr. Biden for help with one particular group: American Jews, who routinely tend to vote Democratic but whom the Republicans are, once again, making a run at," the Times article read.
According to the Times article, Democratic party officials believe that Obama will not lose the support of U.S. Jews, especially after Obama's pro-Israel speech at the United Nations last week.
Concerns were raised, however, by the Republican victory last month in an election for Congressional seat in a district of New York with many Orthodox Jews.
The Democratic loss in that election led the Obama administration to enlist a number of well-known officials, including Biden, with good ties with Jewish leaders to work to ensure Jewish support for Obama in the 2012 presidential election.