Oldest Rabbinic Group in U.S. Bans Voting for Anti-Family Values Candidates

(Monday, February 4th, 2008)

levin1.jpgOn the eve of Super Tuesday the oldest Orthodox Jewish Rabbinic organization in the country issued a historic declaration.

Rabbi Yehuda Levin, spokesman for the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of the U.S. and Canada issued the following statement:

“It is very important for our community to demonstrate its appreciation for our wonderful country by exercising our civic obligation to vote. However, it is even more important that we do not support any candidate whose position is in any way antithetical to our Torah based morality. Candidates who support abortion on demand, the “toeiva” agenda, liberal attitudes towards pornography of any sort – are antithetical to our way of life and it is forbidden to support or vote for them.

“Our former president, internationally acknowledged as the premier legal decisor, Rabbi Moshe Feinstien was most vigorous in condemning abortion on demand and the “toeiva” agenda and we take his legacy as our guide.

“If one has to vote in an election or primary where both candidates are anti-Biblical family values, G-d forbid, that they use the “lesser of two evils” approach. Rather, let the voter cast a write-in protest vote, but do not compromise by voting for the “lesser evil”. If we value the purity and holiness of our children and grandchildren, we dare not compromise.

“It is our sincere hope that not only our own Jewish community, but our fellow citizens of all faiths, and their leaders, will draw a line in the sand and institute policies forbidding voting for anti-traditional family- values candidates. We are confident that were this policy instituted, within one or two election cycles, we would find many more pro-family candidates on every level of government.”

30 Comments

  1. WolfishMusings says:

    However, it is even more important that we do not support any candidate whose position is in any way antithetical to our Torah based morality

    Since freedom of religion is antithetical to our Torah based morality (after all, Avoda Zarah is assur even for a non-Jew), just whom are we supposed to vote for then? I don’t think any candidate supports restricting religion.

    The Wolf

  2. Idealist says:

    Who is the leader of the the organization today?

  3. rmorr says:

    While I certainly do not favor abortion on demand, I don’t think the question is as simple as “pr”- or “anti”-family, particularly with regard to abortion. The Xian Right takes the position that life always begins at conception; they permit no exceptions, none at all. As I understand it, Chazal have poskined that if a fetus threatens the life of the mother, and no other solution is available, a Rav may rule that the fetus is a Rodef, and permit appropriate steps to be taken. If the “Pro-Life” positon was passed into Law, that Rav would (Chaz v’Sholem) be arrested and tried for murder as an accessory before the fact, and the Doctor and Mother would also be arrested as well. Again, while I do not favor abortion on demand, I reiterate that I don’t feel the situation is as simple as “pro”- or “anti”-family. Thank you.

  4. Lawman says:

    Ok. So of the four viable candidates – Romney, McCain, Hillary, or Obama – who does not violate this edict? (Huckabee would not violate it but is not worth voting for, either).

  5. stan the man says:

    Pretty difficult choices with any of the candidates, if we include: morality, honesty, sensitivity, ethical behavior to the equations.

  6. amhaaretz says:

    I think you confused his identity as to which organization Rabbi Levin represents. Please advise

  7. makeakidushhashem says:

    Is he speaking for them?

  8. LBK says:

    Is that the same line in the sand that he used to make it rain?

  9. ani oymer says:

    #5 The Town Crier writes:
    “…..he is over seventy with a daughter under 21. is that family values?”

    While I’m sure we both agree and prefer someone closer in age to our daughters as a prospective marriage partner there is nothing wrong with marrying someone 20 yrs younger, that being said, it is quite common in unzer gegen for a 70+ year old tatteh un mamme to marry off their 21 year old son/daughter.

    I’m not a supporter of mccain but stick to the real issues please.

  10. gebenched says:

    maybe we should all just write in Rabbi Yehuda Levin for President. But hen he does support the Xian positon on abortion, so he doesn’t quite qulify under his own requirements

  11. deepthinker says:

    Many of the posters demonstrate a lack of respect for Rav Moshe Feinstein, ZT”L. Rav Moshe issued a letter in which he specifically mentioned “ToEyVa-Rights” (my euphemism), and urged all Torah Jews to stand up and be counted in opposition to these edicts.

    By mixing-in all kinds of other irrelevant issues, they are attempting to negate Rav Moshe’s P’Sak with a Reductio-Ad-Absurdum technique.

    If you boys want to cite some other Torah authorities who disagree with Rav Moshe, go ahead, and do so, but ridicule and dismissal is not the proper Torah approach!

  12. MiMedinat HaYam says:

    whats the difference?

    agudah will support anyone who gives them more $$$ (not that you or i get any of that $$$), whether or not they support toaivah agenda (just look at their support for “spitzer”)

  13. anonymous613 says:

    Rabosi- please keep in mind who the author of this proclamation is- he is a self appointed spokesman – the Agudas Horabbonim is not in the habit of authoring such proclamations- besides for the fact that it is totaly inactive in any fashion- “Rabbi Yehuda Levin” assumes different organizations label at different times – sometimes he will use Igud Harabbanim – he is no more then a self promoting pr machine- I do not understand why YW even publicizes this-

  14. bestbubby says:

    I’m a registered Democrat, but I won’t vote in the Primaries, & I’ll “hold my nose” & vote Republican (with severe reservations) in November. It’s Hobson’s Choice.

  15. cantoresq says:

    I’m juat curious if all those who so easily condemn abortion on demand are willing to pay the societal cost of raising all those unwanted children? BTW I happen to oppose freely available abortion, but it’s not an easy choice.

  16. kamime says:

    how do you cast a write-in protest vote?

  17. RebElimelech says:

    Why is R’ Levin obsessed with Toievas? Didn’t he blame the drought in Atlanta on gay marriage. America has bigger issues to worry about, like the economy, war in Iraq, and healthcare.

  18. chesed says:

    2 words for all of you “VOTE ROMNEY”!!!!!!

  19. kimdoo says:

    I saw a sign up in the 5 Towns community that endorses Barrack Obama.

  20. ravizzy says:

    What an opportunity the Dems threw out this year, with two of the saddest candidates in AMerican history vying for the presidency. With blindolds over my eyes, I must vote Republican no matter who runs. A black Muslim? The metunaf Bill back in the White House? HaShem yishmereinu!

  21. Proud KAJ-WH TIDE Guy says:

    ‘Rabbi” Yehuda Levin is a publicity-seeker.He is NOT a representative of the OU. The OU does not endorse candidates,nor does any other proper religious organization. The OU deals with Kashrus,not politics. None of the candidates cares about these issues. They want power,and will say what they believe most people want to hear,. Vote,and daven that Hashem will give you the idea to vote for the correct candidate. Use your seichel.

  22. LBK says:

    The OU and the Union of Orthodox Rabbis are actually two separate and distinct organizations.

  23. tzoorba says:

    KAJ-WH TIDE Guy,

    If they are not political, then why did they join that Leftist protest about calling Barak Hussein Obama a Muslim?

    Rav Shimon Schwab z”l specifically inveighed against voting for an immorality supporting candidate. The only one in the current field who might have the anti immorality position is Romney.

  24. azh says:

    Did all of those Rabbonim agree that he should wear a talis to the press conference?

    #22 – Actually the OU has an entire division that deals with Politics (IPA). They have another division that deals with Kashrus, one that deals with shuls, one that deals with youth programs, etc. OU & Rabbi Levin are not related.

  25. Joseph says:

    OU is modern orthodox while UOR is chareidi (and was led by Reb Moshe Feinstein ZTV’L).

  26. Baal Boose says:

    i think i agree with what he says,
    but anyone who puts on a talis for show gives me the creeps.

  27. matzahlocaol101 says:

    I don’t understand why were discussing political candidates when YU “Jewish medical ethics experts” advocate abortion. The have a very rosey name for it, they call it “pregnancy reduction”. But it’s abortion. At one point YU had Toeaivah clubs on campus, I don’t know if they’re still there. How can we tell MO people not to vote like YU teaches?

  28. makeakidushhashem says:

    Not that I plan on advertising who I am voting for but Obama is NOT a muslim!

  29. freezer says:

    Illini07-we know you love obama!!! Enough about him not being muslim!!!!

  30. avrohom says:

    RESPONSE REGARDING WHO DOES RABBI YEHUDA LEVIN REPRESENT!!
    Here are the facts about R” Yehuda Levin:
    1) In a letter t Reb Elya Svei shlita in 5743, Rav Avigdor Miller ztl, writes” Levin is muchzak etzleinu k’gever b’giborim, kol deeburov dibarti eemo zeh zman rav….”
    2) Writing to Reb Yidel Goldstein of 47th Street Foto in 1984, Rav Avigdor Miller ztl writes: “hinei Reb Yehuda Levin rutz le Congress, key kane tzuvaisi oso…”
    3)In 5744, theDebrezciner Rov ztl, writes 2 handwritten pages stating :”halevay yihye chelki imo (with Rabbi Levin) ve’imohem (those who support Rabbi Levin). In this letter which was also signed by the Linzer Rov, yibodel lchaim, father in law of the Kloizenberger Rov shlita, they prohibit voting for any candidate who supports immorality.
    4) In 5759 Parshas Noach, the late Kashauer Rov ztl, writes: “regarding Rabbi Yehuda Levin, he is a shlucho derabonon bechol asar ve’asar, who has been working for 20 years to fight hashchoso….”. Both the Kashauer rov and yibodel lchaim, the Sekulener Rebbe shlita, who added to that letter in his own handwriting and also refers to Rabbi Levin as a shlucho derabonon, give blessings to all of Rabbi Levin’s supporters with “bonim, chayei and mezonei revichei”!!
    5) Rav Avrohom Leitner ztl, the Montevideyer Rov, of the Hisachdus, wrote a full handwitten page praising Rabbi Levin and urging people to support him.
    6) When Rabbi Levin ran for office in the 1990′s signatories for him included Rav Avigdor Miller ztl, and the Mirrer Roshei Yeshiva,(except for Reb Shmuel Berenbaum ztl, who NEVER signed any political paper), including Rav Laizer Ginsberg, Rav Nelkenbaum, Rav Shepanski, Rav Kaminsky, Rav Elya Yurkanski ztl, Rav Elya Brudne etc.
    At that time Rabbi Levin was honored at the Mirrer Yeshiva Ketana and Rav Kalmanovich ztl spoke glowingly of Rabbi Levin’s accomplishments, praising “his golden pen and golden tongue”.
    7) When Rabbi Levin ran for Congress amongst the dozens of Rabonim who publicly endorsed him was Rav Braun ztl, the author of Sheorim metzuyonim Behalocho, who never before nor after signed for any political issue. He also wrote a full teshuvo, concluding that his psak halocho, is that it is absolutely PROHIBITED al pi Torah, to support a Politician who does not promote Torah moral values, (for example one who is pro-abortion or gay rights etc.)even if the candidate would guarantee to get badly needed funds for mosdos hatorah.
    8) During recent years when Rabbi Levin almost single handedly initiated and led the fight in Eretz Yisroel against the gay parade, by involving the Knesset, Christian Leaders (lay & religious), the Chief Rabbinate, the VATICAN (yes he flew to Rome and got the approval of the Pope!!)and Muslim clergymen, he received 1st page coverage in the N.Y. Times. In fact they referred to Rabbi Levin as “a major organizer and effective fighter”, as did many other media outlets. Channel 2 TV in Israel did a 2 hour Documentary singling out Rabbi Levin as the main antagonist and Chief Antagonizer against the Israeli Gay Movement and crediting Rabbi Levin with dismantling and destroying the Gay Parade that was supposed to take place in jerusalem.
    Rabbi Levin appeared in Time magazine and his statements about the Jerusalem Gay Parade “it’s the Holy Land NOT the Homo land” literally reverberated around the World. Newsweek magazine actually chose that quote as their #2 Quote of the week for the entire world news.
    10)January 22, 1979, Rabbi Levin, 1st officially represented the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of United States and Canada (Agudas Horabonim), speaking in front of a live rally attended by over 100,000 people from all over the world, in Washington D.C. at the March for Life. He continues to do to this very day. In addition to the 100,000 live supporters it is broadcasted to millions of viewers via CSPAN nd many Catholic Stations .
    Similarly Rabbi Levin has testified in front of Congress , representing the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of United States and Canada (Agudas Horabonim). PLEASE FEEL FREE TO PHONE RAV HIRSH GINSBURG, SHLITA, THE MENAHEL OF Agudas Horabonim, WHO WILL PROUDLY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT RABBI LEVIN HAS BEEN THE SPOKESMAN FOR AGUDAS HORABONIM ON ALL MORAL ISSUES FOR OVER 3 DECADES (30 YEARS!!!)
    Rabi Levin has appeared on TV, radio and live in many states and abroad including Eretz Yisroel as THE representative of the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of United States and Canada (Agudas Horabonim).
    Furthermore, Rabbi Levin was responsible for soliciting the definitive Psak Halocho, signed by Moreinu Harav Moshe Feinstein ztl, and yibodel lchaim, Rav Hirsh Ginsburg shlita detailing the obligation to fight any and all aspects of immorality. This teshuvo was actually written on official Union of Orthodox Rabbis of United States and Canada (Agudas Horabonim) stationary!!
    11) A similar call to reb Avrohom Hecht, President of Igud Horabonim, Rabbinical Alliance of America, will get the same response, namely that Rabbi Levin has been their spokesman for decades and continues in that capacity.
    Whether or not one personally approves of Rabbi Levin, there is no doubt whatsoever that for over 30 years Rabbi Levin has enjoyed the active and full support of Gedolei Yisroel from the previopus generation till the present. Rabbi Levin does this with great mesiras nefesh, (no staff, no office etc.), and has garnered significant coverage from the media which usually either ignore these issues or are hostile to them. Rabbi Levin has been mekadesh shem shomayim to tens of millions of the “tovim she’beumos” around the globe, who know and respect Rabbi Levin and his Torah True message!
    The January 2007 issue of Inside the Vatican Magazine, cites Rabbi Levin as ONE OF THE TEN MOST IMPORTANT PEOPLE OF THE YEAR!!!. They also write: “Catholics should be shamed by the level of activism of Rabbi Levin….”
    This is what is meant by an Or Le’Amim.

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