In a letter yesterday to members of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), representing over 2,500 traditional, Orthodox rabbis in American public policy, announced its opposition to the nomination of Adeel Abdullah Mangi to serve as a judge on the United State Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. CJV explained that their objections stemmed from “Mr. Mangi’s past association with and well-documented support for the Rutgers Center for Security, Race and Rights (the Center), and on his evasive responses when asked about antisemitic positions espoused by the Center.”
In both written and oral testimony before the Committee, Mangi repeatedly claimed not to know the positions and activities of the Rutgers Center, though he had made a large personal donation and requested that his firm fund multiple legal fellowships. CJV wrote in their letter: “Mr. Mangi would have us believe that he joined the board of the Center, donated $6,500 for ‘academic research’ by the Center, encouraged his law firm to give twice that amount for Law Fellowships, but had no idea what the Center and its director were actually doing.”
Mangi also refused to challenge or contradict antisemitic statements by the Center’s director, instead claiming that they reflected a “very complex history.” He knew of a speech at the Center by authors peddling antisemitic narratives. Yet as CJV noted, “the fact that the Center promoted antisemitic propaganda, to the point of blaming Jews for the hatred directed against them, apparently gave Mr. Mangi no pause.”
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The rabbis noted that criticism of the Center and its director by local and national Jewish leaders was “frequent and vociferous,” and took aim at certain Jewish organizations, notably the ADL and American Jewish Committee, who claimed in public statements that it was somehow inappropriate to question Mr. Mangi about his affiliation with the Center, or even that it might reflect bias against his Muslim faith. “None of the foregoing statements,” the rabbis wrote, “provided even a single example of a challenging question posed to Mr. Mangi that was unrelated to the antisemitic positions, statements, and activities of the Center or its director.”
CJV concluded by urging the Committee to await a candidate “untainted” by association with antisemitic groups, “especially at a time when antisemitic hatred is openly displayed in a fashion which Americans have not seen since the Nazi era.”