Why This Jewish GOP Donor Has Had It With Party's Attempts to Overturn the Election

Ben Samuels
Ben Samuels
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Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., rises to join House Republican members to object to confirming the Electoral College votes from Pennsylvania, January 7, 2021.
Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., rises to join House Republican members to object to confirming the Electoral College votes from Pennsylvania, January 7, 2021. Credit: Andrew Harnik/AP Photo
Ben Samuels
Ben Samuels

WASHINGTON -Sam Fox, former chairman of the Republican Jewish Coalition, has been known for years in Jewish political circles as a proud Republican who donated to GOP candidates and had close ties to the George W. Bush administration, under which he was appointed U.S. ambassador to Belgium.

Last week, Fox made headlines by denouncing the Republican senator from his home state of Missouri, Josh Hawley, for his attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. His criticism of Hawley, in an interview with the Kansas City Star, made national headlines as it highlighted the anger toward Hawley even inside the Republican Party.

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On Monday, Fox explained in a statement provided to Haaretz why he decided to speak out against Hawley and other Republicans who challenged Joe Biden's election victory.

"Jews know all too well what happens when pluralistic democracy and the rule of law give way to mob rule," Fox stated. "The protest at the U. S. Capitol developed into an effort to subvert the Constitution and the law, and to accomplish the violent overthrow of the U.S. Government."

He added that "It was a disgraceful attack on our American democracy at its living heart, the halls of Congress. And all of this was unleashed by a Big Lie – the assertion that Donald Trump won the election, which in fact he lost to Joe Biden." The use of the term 'Big Lie' which refers to propoganda used by the Nazi Party in Germany, echoed a comment made last week by Biden. 

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as they push barricades to storm the US Capitol in Washington D.C on January 6, 2021.Credit: ROBERTO SCHMIDT / AFP

"Jews know all too well how effective the Big Lie can be," Fox said in his statement. "It’s no surprise that prominent among the 'protesters' last week were white supremacists, many of them proudly antisemitic. What happened must be condemned in the strongest possible terms. It is totally, totally, totally unacceptable."

Last week, Fox told The Kansas City Star that “Sen. Hawley engaged in an act of reckless pandering. He helped put the country on a path that has ended in five deaths and in disgrace for himself and for the nation. Supporting Hawley when he ran for the Senate in 2018 was my mistake. He can certainly forget about any support from me again.”

Fox’s disavowal of Hawley followed condemnations from other high profile supporters, including former Missouri Senator John Danforth, who called his support of Hawley "the biggest mistake" of his life.

Fox was one of Hawley's earliest and most outspoken backers, leading the public recruitment of Hawley that led to his victory in the 2018 Senate race against Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill. The year prior, Fox urged other Republican donors to withhold support for other declared candidates so Hawley could run.

A supporter of Donald Trump holds a noose outside the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, U.S., January 6, 2021.Credit: Trevor Hughes/USA TODAY via REUTERS

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