Wexler Quits Congress to Campaign for Peace
Florida Dem to head Center for Middle East Peace and Economic Cooperation
This morning, Robert Wexler, the seven-term Democratic congressman from Boca Raton, announced that he’s resigning his seat to take over the Center for Middle East Peace and Economic Cooperation, a think-tank founded by Slim-Fast billionaire (and powerhouse Democratic donor) Daniel Abraham. Wexler, who sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, was among Obama’s earliest and fiercest Jewish backers, said in his official statement that he regrets not being able to finish out his term but made the move now because “there is no time to waste” on Middle East peace. “I am convinced that now is the time for me to engage on these issues on a full time basis,” he said.
Naturally, everyone in Washington—on both sides of the aisle—is wondering what’s really going on. It’s hard to imagine that Abraham would have appointed Wexler, and done it in such a high-profile way, if there were some dire scandal in the offing. And Wexler told the Associated Press that he is absolutely, definitely “not under any investigation. My marriage is intact. My health is good and, thank God, the health of my family is good.” The early spin, according to Politico’s Laura Rozen, was that Wexler wanted a pay bump to help out with his kids’ college tuition. Meanwhile, Spencer Ackerman at the Washington Independent floated some blind quotes suggesting that being out of government allows Wexler greater flexibility in pushing Obama’s agenda with the Israeli government, and in the American Jewish community. Which is a nice idea because, well, there’s always next year’s Nobel to think about.
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