POLITICS
09/11/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

"Rabbis For Health Insurance Reform" Campaign Launched By Obama Ally

The debate over comprehensive health care reform has been so heated this summer it was bound to get biblical.

On Tuesday, the National Democratic Jewish Council announced a new stage in its efforts to support the president's health care reform agenda. The group, a staunch ally of the White House, launched a "Rabbis for Health Insurance Reform" webpage, urging Congress to get legislation passed for "Democrats, Republicans, Christians, Muslims, and Jews."

The site casts the need for reform as a fiscal and moral imperative and wraps it in the cloak of Judaism's traditions.

"Our tradition teaches us to pursue justice," the site reads. "Yet it is not a just society when families are forced to choose between paying their mortgages or paying for prescription drugs. It is not a just society when small businesses must choose between being profitable or providing coverage to their employees. It is not a just society when people are denied health insurance because they have a pre-existing condition for which they need medical care. Equal access to safe and affordable health care is an essential social justice issue of our time."

Rabbis are urged to sign a petition at the end of the page.

This is not the first time progressive politics have been fused with Talmudic themes. In May, a group of Pennsylvanian Rabbis took out an ad in Philadelphia's largest Jewish newspaper urging Sen. Arlen Specter, himself a Jew, to support the Employee Free Choice Act.

While Specter's vote on EFCA remains up in the air, a few weeks after the ad ran he told a union crowd that they will be pleased with his final position.

Coincidence? Or the power of the Rabbi lobby? Who knows.

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