Boca Raton, FL - The NYT reported Saturday that in a meeting between Biden and 15 rabbis in Florida – meant to bolster the Jewish community’s support of the presidential campaign – the vice president was asked about the Obama administration’s reluctance to release Pollard, who was imprisoned in 1986, after he was convicted of spying for Israel.
“President Obama was considering clemency, but I told him, ‘Over my dead body are we going to let him out before his time.’ If it were up to me, he would stay in jail for life,” U.S. Vice President Joe Biden was quoted as saying during a meeting with rabbis in Florida in a New York Times article published on Saturday.
The Times article reported that U.S. President Barack Obama has turned to Biden to shore up support amongst U.S. Jews.According to the Times article, Democratic party officials believe that Obama will not lose the support of U.S. Jews, especially after Obama’s pro-Israel speech at the United Nations last week.
Concerns were raised, however, by the Republican victory last month in an election for Congressional seat in a district of New York with many Orthodox Jews.
The Democratic loss in that election led the Obama administration to enlist a number of well-known officials, including Biden, with good ties with Jewish leaders to work to ensure Jewish support for Obama in the 2012 presidential election.