Community Leaders Dispute Report Implying Endorsement of Eric Adams

NEW YORK -
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Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan/File)

A report of rabbanim and askanim purportedly supporting Eric Adams’ mayoral candidacy is being called into question, after several people quoted therein say it is inaccurate.

The article was posted in several media outlets hours after an ad appeared in Yiddish-language newspapers with activists from several Boro Park Chassiduses endorsing the campaign of Andrew Yang.

The article was titled “The Munkatcher Rebbe, and Many Other Orthodox Jewish Leaders and Groups Throw Their Support Behind Mayoral Candidate Eric Adams” and included quotes of praise for Adams from Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel, executive vice president of Agudath Israel of America, and Rabbi Chanina Sperlin of Crown Heights JCC, possibly implying an endorsement. Both disputed the content of the article.

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Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel (Yitzy Engel/File)

Agudath Israel said in a statement:

“There are media reports circulating claiming that Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel, executive vice president, and – by extension – Agudath Israel itself, has endorsed the Adams campaign for the New York City mayoralty.

“In fact, Rabbi Zwiebel was invited to a “meet-the-candidate” event in a private home. He was asked to introduce the candidate, with whom Rabbi Zwiebel has a long and warm relationship, but made no endorsement. Purported quotes indicating an endorsement are not accurate.

“Agudath Israel never endorses candidates, though the Agudah does seek to meet with them, and to share the concerns of our constituency, on a regular basis.

We appreciate the opportunity to correct the record.”

Rabbi Sperlin told Hamodia that he is “not sure where the quote comes from.” Rabbi Sperlin said that while Adams is indeed a friend to the community, he has not made an endorsement in the race yet.

The article also says that at a meeting with the candidate, the Munkatcher Rebbe “provided Adams not only with blessings, but with his endorsement, by explaining that ‘Hakorus hatov is a middah that [makes] us unique as a Jewish people.’”

Multiple people in Munkatch who spoke with Hamodia cast doubt on the article’s assertion that the Rebbe had endorsed Adams, noting that Chaim Friedman, who is close with the Rebbe, was one of the signatories to the pro-Yang ad, and that the Rebbe himself has never made any endorsements.

rborchardt@hamodia.com


Updated Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 5:36 pm .