Lee won in the newly drawn and heavily Democratic district that encompasses much of southern and western Pittsburgh. She emerged from a crowded field to replace retiring Rep. Mike Doyle and will face Republican nominee Michael Doyle (no relation to the retiring congressman), who ran unopposed in his primary.
Lee was endorsed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and nearly every member of the “Squad,” the most progressive voting bloc in the House. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee poured about $2 million into the district to sway the vote for her opponent, Steve Irwin, over concerns that Lee would be an anti-Israel voice in Congress.
When I hear American pols use the refrain “Israel has the right to defend itself” in response to undeniable atrocities on a marginalized pop, I can’t help but think of how the west has always justified indiscriminate& disproportionate force &power on weakened & marginalized ppl
— Summer Lee (@SummerForPA) May 14, 2021
The issue especially hits home in Pittsburgh, which in 2018 saw the worst antisemitic attack in U.S. history when a gunman killed 11 people at the Tree of Life synagogue.
A similar dynamic played out in North Carolina’s 4th District, where Valerie Foushee received support from AIPAC because of her more progressive opponent Nida Allam’s past statements about Israel.