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Chuck Schumer’s Brutal Takedown of Bibi Is a Watershed Moment

The senator’s extraordinary speech attacking Benjamin Netanyahu and defending Palestinian rights signals a sea change in U.S. politics—with big implications for 2024.

Photo by Jacquelyn Martin/AFP/Getty Images
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks on as the U.S. secretary of state gives statements to the media inside the Kirya, which houses the Israeli Defense Ministry, after their meeting in Tel Aviv on October 12, 2023.

On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer gave a groundbreaking speech lacerating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the horrific civilian toll in Gaza. This is a big moment in U.S. politics: The highest-ranking Jewish Democrat stood strongly for Palestinian rights at a time when the war in Gaza is badly dividing the Democratic coalition. To navigate these complexities, we talked to Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers, which is promoting a peace effort called Standing Together, and Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne, who writes regularly about intra-coalitional tensions among Democrats.