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Jerusalem - Romney Raises $1Million in 1st Presidential Fundraiser in Israel

Published on: July 30, 2012 07:33 AM
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Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney greets audience members after he delivered a speech in Jerusalem, Sunday, July 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney greets audience members after he delivered a speech in Jerusalem, Sunday, July 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Jerusalem - US Republican Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney left Israel for Poland Monday with over $1 million more in his campaign war chest than when he arrived, following a first-ever presidential fundraiser in the country.

Some 47 people attended breakfast at a room at Jerusalem’s King David Hotel with Romney, his wife, and one of his sons, at the price of $50,000 per couple. Romney spoke for some 20 minutes and focused on the economy, both in the US and in Israel. He then took a couple of questions.

Romney’s wife, Ann, also spoke briefly, and expressed her attachment to Israel.

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“As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000 dollars, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality,” Romney said

Citing Harvard professor David Landes’ book The Wealth and Poverty of Nations, Romney attributed the differences to culture, an innovative business culture, and the resilience of the Jewish people.

“I am overwhelmingly impressed with the hand of providence, whenever it chooses to apply itself, and also the greatness of the human spirit, and how individuals who reach for greatness and have purpose above themselves are able to build and accomplish things that could only be done by a species created in the image of God,” Romney said. “I come to this place, therefore, with a sense of profound humility, as I look around here at great people who’ve accomplished a great thing, and also a sense of spiritual connection, acknowledging the hand of providence in establishing this place and making it a holy city.”
Romney sat at the head of a U-shaped table with billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, who has said he is willing to spend $100 million to defeat US President Barack Obama in the coming elections.

Among others attending the event were New York Jets owner Woody Johnson, New York hedge fund manager Paul Singer,  New York lawyer Phil Rosen: New York healthcare venture capitalist Ken Abramowitz; Miami businessman Simon Falic: Detroit developer John Rakolta; Bob Pence, a Virginia based commercial developer; and Lisa Spies, who is Romney’s finance chair.

Marc Zell co-chairman of Republicans Abroad Israel, said that some 15 – 20 percent of those in the room were American-Israelis.

Abramowitz, who flew in especially for this event and Romney’s speech Sunday evening overlooking the Old City walls, said he did so because “I passionately want Romney elected.”

“If he can take the time out of his busy schedule to come here, I can come and greet him,” said Abramowitz, who has attended one fundraiser a month for Romney for each of the last 10 months.

Asked if he thought Romney felt an emotional connection to Israel, Abramowitz said he felt the former Massachusetts governor had a warm place in his heart for Israel.

Romney, he said, appreciates Israel from the business perspective, and also has a deep respect for America’s allies. In addition, he added, as a Mormon – a religion with only some 14 million adherents around the world, similar to the world’s Jewish population—Romney understands what it is like to be part of a minority religion that has felt religious persecution.

Zell said Monday’s event was the first time either party had held a fundraiser in Israel. By US law, only American citizens or holders of valid Green Cards are allowed to contribute to campaigns. Zell said both parties were fundraising aggressively overseas, with the Obama campaign having held dinners in numerous countries, including China, Hong Kong and Switzerland.

Content is provided courtesy of the Jerusalem Post


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 Jul 30, 2012 at 08:50 AM victorg Says:

The reason their gdp is so low is because they spend too much making war with Israel.

If they would accept Israel's extended arm for peace they would be able to start building some kind of economy. But as it stands they are building nothing except their own destruction.

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 Jul 30, 2012 at 02:54 PM UriLevi Says:

Reply to #1  
victorg Says:

The reason their gdp is so low is because they spend too much making war with Israel.

If they would accept Israel's extended arm for peace they would be able to start building some kind of economy. But as it stands they are building nothing except their own destruction.

Absolutely! A perfect example is the greenhouses in Kush Katif, grossing millions , that were were left by the evicted residents and bought by a former President of the World Bank for the Palestinians to use a starting business venture. Instead their parts used for weapons and as e better location to launch katushyas. Just read "The Haj' by Leon Uris to understand the arrogant yet self-destructive mentality of the Arab Islamic world, I wonder if it could be translated into Yiddish so that even Satmar or real anti-zionists (neterei Karta) could understand the level of Rishus of these people,

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