Author, spiritual guru to the stars and Republican congressional candidate Shmuley Boteach says he wants to help his potential Democratic opponents who are currently embroiled in a nasty attack ad-filled primary battle. Mr. Boteach released a YouTube video today that appears to have been filmed in his living room in which he offered to help make peace between Steve Rothman and Bill Pascrell.
Messrs. Rothman and Pascrell are both current congressman and former friends who are running against each other after the redistricting process left Mr. Rothman with an unfavorable district. Mr. Boteach thinks he can help them “reduce the tensions that have totally overtaken their congressional race.”
“I hosted a TV show on TLC called Shalom In The Home where I actually mediated families across the country creating greater harmony,” Mr. Boteach says in his video. “I want to offer my services to congressmen Rothman and Pascrell to try to bring a more civil tone to their campaign.”
Author, spiritual guru to the stars and Republican congressional candidate Shmuley Boteach doesn’t want anyone using his friend Cory Booker’s recent campaign controversy for political gain–except for him.
In the aftermath of the flap over Mr. Booker’s comments about the Obama campaign’s attacks on Mitt Romney’s time at Bain Capital, Mr. Boteach wrote an op-ed in the Jewish newspaper Algemeiner criticizing anyone who would try to score points off the Bain brouhaha. He also included a shot against his probably opponents in New Jersey’s 9th congressional district.
Mr. Boteach began his column on an apolitical note.
“For a moment, let me remove my hat as a Republican candidate for public office and speak only wearing my yarmulke, as a Rabbi who has known Cory for twenty years and has had the blessing throughout that time of an intimate, brotherly friendship,” he wrote. ”Cory is my brother. We are on different sides of the political spectrum. He is a proud and staunch Democrat. But few people have taught me more about being a good person than Cory.”
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, the author, television personality and erstwhile spiritual guru to Michael Jackson, has raised $90,470 since starting his underdog New Jersey congressional campaign last month. Mr. Boteach announced his first quarter fundraising results in a statement today that also touted some of his big name backers; Birthright Israel co-founder Michael Steinhardt, coffee mogul Sunny Sassoon, conservative radio host Dennis Prager, Elie Wiesel’s son, Elisha and House Minority Leader Eric Cantor, whose PAC gave Mr. Boteach $5,000.
“The substantial sum we raised in little over five weeks, since announcing my campaign, is evidence of the passionate desire on the part of Americans for a values-based campaign that dismisses divisive social wedge issues and focuses on fixing the family, combatting materialism and greed, and encouraging service and commitment on the part of America’s citizens,” Mr. Boteach said in a statement. “I am humbled by the support we have gained with our message of dignity through self-reliance and economic renewal through personal accountability and entrepreneurship.”
Newark Mayor Cory Booker is one of the most visible Democrats in New Jersey, but his old friend, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, is running for Congress in the Garden State on a GOP ticket. Despite his relationship with the rabbi, Mr. Booker didn’t sound likely to back his friend’s congressional campaign when he spoke with The Politickerthis afternoon.
“I’ll tell you this, I’m a Democrat and, at this point, I have not made any decision, but I’d be hard pressed not to support,” Mr. Booker momentarily stopped himself before continuing, “You know, this puts me in a very tough position, but the reality is, I think it’s very important that we return a Democratic congressman from that district.”
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor is throwing his support behind the man who calls himself “America’s Rabbi,” Shmuley Boteach, who is running for Congress in New Jersey’s 9th district. Mr. Boteach’s campaign received the maximum $5,000 donation from Mr. Cantor’s political action committee, ERICPAC.
“Eric Cantor is my friend and we study Torah together. An inspired leader, he shares my commitment to values-based policies that are essential to the healing of America,” Mr. Boteach said in a statement announcing the donation. “As the only Jewish Republican in the House, Eric has been a strong advocate for the U.S. Israel relationship. I am honored to have his support and backing.”