Last week, I was fortunate to be a part of a meeting Jack Lew held with members of the Reform and Reconstructionist clergy and lay leaders to discuss issues and work collectively to find solutions to issues on the domestic and foreign policy agenda. Following the speech the President gave to the Union for Reform Judaism in December, the group engaged in a conversation on topics from the security for the State of Israel to civil rights to what the Affordable Care Act is doing for the American people.
It was a spirited discussion that highlighted the Administration’s commitment to working with religious and community groups, like the Reform and Reconstructionist movements, to find solutions to problems large and small. The Chief of Staff discussed the President’s unyielding support of Israel and the importance of peace in the Middle East during this trying time, as well as the deep significance of the DREAM Act for the American Jewish Community, a community whose collective identity was founded, in part, upon immigration.
The conversation ended after an in-depth discussion about the importance of civil liberties and civil rights in America so that all can have access to the “American Dream.”
Jarrod Bernstein is the Director of Jewish Outreach in the Office of Public Engagement.