President Obama once confided to a top adviser that he believes he is “the closest thing to a Jew that has ever sat in this office.”
In an interview by an Israeli TV station, former Obama adviser David Axelrod recalled the president venting in a moment of contemplation about criticisms that he doesn’t support Israel strongly enough, JPupdates.com reported.
“You know, I think I am the closest thing to a Jew that has ever sat in this office,” the president told Mr. Axelrod. “For people to say that I am anti-Israel, or, even worse, anti-Semitic, it hurts.”
White House press secretary Josh Earnest endorsed the sentiment Tuesday, saying Mr. Obama gave a heartfelt speech at a Jewish synagogue in Washington last month that expressed “the kinds of common bonds and common values that are embodied in his administration that are [also] advocated by the Jewish community.”
“The president does feel that kind of kinship,” Mr. Earnest said.