Bernie Sanders’ Jewishness: Does it matter? - www.jewishaz.com: Your Voice

Bernie Sanders’ Jewishness: Does it matter?

Rabbi Reuven Mann | Posted: Wednesday, February 17, 2016 10:00 am

Something is conspicuously missing from the current political cycle: meaningful attention to the ethnic identity of the candidates. It is interesting to note that Judaism does make an appearance among the principals. Donald Trump, current leader of the Republican pack and longtime supporter of Israel and Jewish causes, is a Presbyterian. However, his daughter, Ivanka, is an Orthodox Jewish convert whose husband is an observant Jew. She has two children and is expecting a third. Thus, Trump has a Jewish daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren.

The Clintons can also speak of a Jewish connection. Their daughter, Chelsea, is married to a Jew, so they also have a Jewish son-in-law. However, according to Torah law, which determines religious identity by matrilineal descent, the Clintons cannot be said to have a Jewish grandchild.

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