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Michigan Congressman Shri Thanedar Renounces Democratic Socialists of America Membership for its Pro-Palestine Stand

Michigan Congressman Shri Thanedar Renounces Democratic Socialists of America Membership for its Pro-Palestine Stand

  • In California, Los Angeles City Councilmember Nithya Raman also disavowed the group after criticism for her ties to the group.

Congressman Shri Thanedar of Michigan has renounced his membership in the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), for its unwillingness “to call out terrorism in all its forms.” After “the brutal terrorist attacks”  on Israel over the weekend, “which included the indiscriminate murder, rape, and kidnapping of innocent men, women, and children, I can no longer associate with an organization unwilling to call out terrorism in all its forms,” the Indian American said in a statement. 

He said the Oct. 8 “hate-filled and antisemitic” pro-Palestine rally hosted by the New York chapter of the DSA, makes it impossible for me to continue my affiliation.” Noting that he stands with Israel “and its right to defend itself,” he said “there is no place for moral equivocation in the face of unadulterated evil as we have seen from Hamas.” He will “continue to work toward the goals that brought me to Congress in the first place: universal healthcare, workers’ rights, strong labor unions, equity for communities of color, environmental justice, and compassionate immigration,” he concluded. “My ideals have not changed at all. I strongly believe that ending my association with DSA serves my constituents’ interests as they expect me to represent them by helping to build a better, more just world, not fanning the flames of hatred.”

On the day Hamas launched its assault, the DSA publicly declared its “solidarity with Palestine,” calling the attacks  “a direct result of Israel’s apartheid regime — a regime that receives billions in funding from the United States.”

In an earlier interview with The Federalist, he called out the DSA for its response to Hamas’ attack on Israel. “What the DSA missed here is that this is a terrorist attack, the biggest murdering of Jewish people since the Holocaust,” he said. “I am not very proud of the DSA at this time as a member of that organization.”According to the conservative online magazine and podcast, the Indian American was “just one out of the six representatives affiliated with the DSA who responded to its  inquiries to condemn the group’s defense of Hamas.”

However, the Free Press cited an email from Mikal Goodman, a Pontiac City councilperson and co-chair of the Metro Detroit Democratic Socialists of America, where he said Thanedar had been voted out of the local DSA organization in September because of his support of Modi. The first-term Congressman escorted the Indian Prime Minister during his joint address to the U.S. Congress on June 22. “His views are not − and have never been − representative of Detroit DSA,” Goodman wrote to the publication. “Rep. Thanedar’s sensationalist statement today renouncing a membership that he has not been entitled to hold for nearly a month is a selfish distraction from the tragedy unfolding in the region.”

Meanwhile, in California, Los Angeles City Councilmember Nithya Raman was criticized for her support for the DSA. She later disavowed the group, noting in a post on social media that statements from the national DSA had “failed to reckon with the horrors committed by Hamas and was unacceptably devoid of empathy for communities in Israel.”

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According to the Los Angeles Times, Raman’s condemnation of the DSA came after Prosecutor Ethan Weaver, running against Raman in the March primaries, “called on her to reject her endorsement by the DSA’s Los Angeles chapter, which raised money and ran phone banks for her in 2020.” DSA-LA re-endorsed Raman last month, the daily said. Three years ago, Raman, who represents Los Angeles’ 4th Council District, defeated Councilman David Ryu by a comfortable margin in becoming the first council candidate at City Hall to oust an incumbent in 17 years. She was also the first DSA member to hold a city council office.

(Top photo, courtesy, Shri Thanedar/Facebook)

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