Jewish Insider's Daily Kickoff: April 5, 2016

Behind Donald Trump, son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner | Adelson v. NJDC | Inside WeLive | When Chelsea Handler met Leon Wieseltier

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump addresses the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) afternoon general session in Washington March 21, 2016.
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TOP TALKER: "New York Observer ‘re-visiting’ coverage after top editor acknowledges ‘input’ for key Trump speech" by Fred Barbash: "The New York Observer, which is owned by Donald Trump’s son-in-law, is “re-visiting” its policy on covering Trump’s presidential campaign in the wake of the revelation that its editor in chief provided “input” for Trump’s speech to AIPAC last month. The Observer had reported Trump’s own comment at the time of the speech that he had consulted his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, an Orthodox Jew, about the speech to the pro-Israel lobbying group. But the paper made no mention of any role played by Observer editor Ken Kurson." [WashPost]

“Input: I looked at a draft,” Kurson wrote
 when asked to clarify his role. “Jared and I have been discussing politics since 2004. It’s been a shared passion since well before I worked for him. We talk every day about all kinds of things. It’s not unusual for an editor to talk politics with his publisher. What’s unusual is that a publisher’s father-in-law runs for president.” [HuffPost]

PROFILE: "Behind Donald Trump, a son-in-law who is also an adviser" by Emily Flitter:"Before introducing Donald Trump to roughly a dozen Republican lawmakers at the Washington law offices of Jones Day, U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions paused to acknowledge the man he said had facilitated the closed-door talks. He said it was Jared Kushner... It was also Kushner who fielded a call from Israel's ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, who wanted to offer Trump the Israeli government's perspective ahead of the AIPAC speech, according to the sources... During regular phone calls and lunches Kushner tries both to soothe Murdoch and stump for his father-in-law, these people said." [Reuters "Trump denies scolding Jewish son-in-law over scuttled Israel trip" [ToI]

"Trump to skip major GOP Jewish gathering" by Alex Isenstadt: "Donald Trump will not be attending this week’s gathering of the influential Republican Jewish Coalition, according to a source close to the organization. The RJC is holding its annual spring conference at the posh Venetian hotel and resort in Las Vegas. A number of influential political players will be attending the conference, including Ted Cruz, who will be speaking on Saturday afternoon, Gov. Scott Walker, and Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson, who is up for reelection. However, John Kasich will also not be attending the event." [Politico;JewishInsider]

SPOTLIGHT: "Nevada Supreme Court hears defamation case that hinges on a hyperlink" by Sean Whaley: "A First Amendment case pitting Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson against a national Jewish political organization over an online petition posted by the group in 2012 was argued Monday in front of the Nevada Supreme Court. The lawsuit was brought by Adelson against the National Jewish Democratic Council and two of its officers, David Harris and Marc Stanley. The case had been dismissed by a U.S. District Court, and Adelson appealed." [ReviewJournal]

INSTAGRAM DU JOUR: Gov. Rick Perry -- "Dedication of Torah by Dr Jeffrey Feingold along with Fred Zeidman." [Pic "613 commands in Torah. The last to write a Torah." [Pic]

DRIVING THE CONVERSATION: "Top Republicans talking up Paul Ryan as nominee" by Mike Allen: "One of the nation's best-wired Republicans, with an enviable prediction record for this cycle, sees a 60 percent chance of a convention deadlock and a 90 percent chance that delegates turn to Ryan — ergo, a 54 percent chance that Ryan, who'll start the third week of July as chairman of the Republican National Convention, will end it as the nominee." [Politico]

"Speaker Ryan Meets Netanyahu, Visits Knesset" by Jacob Kornbluh: "The meeting with Netanyahu was conducted with minimal fanfare. There were no opening statements ahead of the meeting or a readout following the meeting. The Prime Minister’s office distributed to the media a photo of Netanyahu and the congressional delegation headed by Ryan with the following two sentences..."[JewishInsider]

Chemi Shalev: "Are Paul Ryan’s photo-ops with Benjamin Netanyahu an innocent sign of a beautiful friendship or a clever ploy en route to the GOP nomination?" [Haaretz]

On Long Island, Kasich invokes Jewish tradition as he notices Jewish voters in the audience:"I see people with yarmulkes on. There are two yarmulkes right back here,” Kasich said during a town hall at Hofstra University in Hempstead. “The greatest Jewish tradition is that you will live a life bigger than yourself, that is what we need in America.” [Twitter]

Opening Up on Israel Policy, Sanders Blasts Settlements, Vows to Take Palestinians to Task:“Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders addressed in length his policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict during an editorial board meeting with the New York Daily News last Thursday, the transcript of which was published on Monday. During the meeting, Sanders explained his position to demand from the Israeli government to not only halt construction in West Bank settlements but also to withdraw from settlements even before a peace settlement is reached. ”If the expansion was illegal, moving into territory that was not their territory, I think withdrawal from those territories is appropriate,” he said." [JewishInsiderHaaretz]

IRAN DEAL: "Caught Between White House And Its Critics, Lawmaker Pledges To Renew Iran Sanctions" by Ron Kampeas: “There’s general agreement we have to extend the sanctions against Iran, and we need to do it before they expire at the end of this year, “ said Sen. Ben Cardin.[JewishWeek/JTA]

HEARD LAST NIGHT -- by Jacob Kornbluh: Malcolm Hoenlein at a JP Updates event moderated by New York City Councilman David Greenfield at Gourmet K in Brooklyn: “The image is created that somehow we lost on the Iran deal. It’s a lie. We won,” he said. “In the Senate, 58 voted against it. What was the vote in the House? Overwhelmingly against it. Because the president was able to pull a parliamentary maneuver, it wasn’t because he won. A majority of Americans still say this is a bad deal. So the educational efforts and all the work that people put in, one should not think that it was in vain. It accomplished something.”

Hoenlein revealed that the Conference of Presidents has invited all of the 2016 presidential candidates to a forum focused on foreign affairs. He joked that if the presidential candidates were to follow through on their promises once they’re in office, “we would have had 47 embassies in Jerusalem.” 

Spotted: Pesach Lerner, Michael Salberg, Menachem Lubinsky, Rabbi Yakov Cohen, Rabbi Mendy Carlebach, Abe Eisner, Chaskel Bennett, Josh Mehlman, Yeruchem Silber, Larry Gordon, Larry Spiewak, Mordy Avigdor, Joe Stamm, Ezra Friedlander, Faye Hirsch, Yidel Perlstein, Joseph Gross, Mendy Reiner, Joshua and Hindy Zilberberg, Patti S. Lubin, and Michael Jaliman. 
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BUSINESS BRIEFS: "Zuckerman stepping down from Boston Properties board" [BostonGlobe]  "Here's Why New York Real Estate Developers Are Richer Than Ever" [Forbes "Related, Tishman Speyer, Silverstein, Brookfield, Vornado among the developers gearing up to vie for $3 billion Penn Station redevelopment" [Crains "Why Talmer Bancorp in Michigan agreed in January to sell itself for 2.3% less than its stock price at the time" [AmericanBanker "Israel’s Metabomed raises $18 mln for cancer-metabolism drugs" [NewsWire] 

STARTUP NATION: "Startups Don't Fail On Ideas, They Fail On Execution" by Caroline Howard: "In a candid conversation with Yossi Vardi, an icon of Israeli high-tech entrepreneurship, at the Forbes Under 30 Summit in Tel Aviv, four founders from Europe, South America and Africa discussed this issue, along with why they became founders, raising capital and finding investors. Joining Vardi on stage in front of an audience of over 150 millennials gathered under a white tent were Kate Unsworth, founder of Vinaya, Simcha Neumark, founder of WorkCapital, Jon Reynolds, cofounder of autocomplete program Swiftkey, and Bheki Kunene, founder of Mind Trix." [Forbes]

"Inside Adam Neumann's WeLive, WeWork's Dorm-Style Take on Urban Housing" by Margaret Rhodes: "It’s called WeLive, and it applies the WeWork model to housing, by renting apartments of various sizes that come fully furnished and decorated, in a building stocked with the kind of conveniences normally found at Silicon Valley tech campuses. In the same way that WeWork provides the infrastructure needed to do your job, WeLive takes care of the many hassles that come with finding and setting up your own home. For those who opt in, WeLive will also provide one particularly alluring amenity: a community of like-minded people." [WiredMagTechCrunch]

TALK OF THE TOWN: "Muslim And Jewish Volunteers Unite To Aid A Struggling Detroit School" by Rahel Gebreyes: "Volunteers from the Michigan Muslim Community Council, the Jewish Community Relations Council of Detroit and the Detroit community at-large joined forces in March to help beautify Nolan Elementary-Middle School, one of the many public schools that has been hit hard by the debt plaguing the Detroit school system." [HuffPost]

AMTRAK Derailment: "Ari Ne'eman, a disability rights activist from Silver Spring, said he was in the second car at the time of the crash. The 28-year-old was heading to Washington after speaking at an event in New York. "The car started shaking wildly, there was a smell of smoke, it looked like there was a small fire and then the window across from us blew out," Ne'eman said. "It was a very frightening experience. I'm frankly very glad that I was not on the first car," where there were injuries, he said. "The moment that the car stopped, I said Shema, a Jewish prayer. I was just so thankful that the train had come to a stop and we were OK." [BaltimoreSun]

DESSERT: "Perfect Strangers: When Chelsea Handler Met Leon Wieseltier" by Nicholas Haramis: "In this new column, T brings together two people for the very first time — to see what happens. Chelsea Handler: Do you believe in God? Leon Wieseltier: Oh, come on. That’s complicated. Wieseltier: Not exactly. I do believe, however, that the materialist analysis of life can’t account for our darkest or highest moments. Genetics and social class — things that are supposed to determine who we are — can’t account for acts of courage, kindness and love." [NYTimes]

BIRTHDAYS: Dean L. Kamen, inventor of the Segway and holder of hundreds of other patents, turns 65... British novelist and screenwriter Anthony Horowitz turns 61... Adam Maslia... Camila Seta... Gene Kadish...
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