Jewish Democrats: Honoring Rep. Ron Paul at GOP convention is 'disturbing'

Jewish Democrats are capitalizing on a planned tribute to Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) at next week's GOP convention to turn the tables on Republicans and accuse them of being anti-Israel.

Throughout the campaign, GOP candidate Mitt Romney and Republicans have sought to portray President Obama as a weak friend of Israel and an appeaser of Iran. Paul however has repeatedly tried to end U.S. aid to Israel and once published newsletters under his name that contained anti-Semitic rhetoric, even though he says he was not directly involved in their creation.

"It is extremely disturbing for so many Americans -- especially American Jews -- to see that the Republican Party will be honoring anti-Israel Representative Ron Paul at its convention next week, but it is not the least bit surprising,” David Harris, the president and CEO of the National Jewish Democratic Council, said in a statement. 

“Throughout the campaign, every alarm bell possible has sounded signaling that Paul is a legitimate factor within the GOP -- whether it was his 'strategic partnership' with Mitt Romney, his delegates winning multiple state party conventions, his former spokesman receiving a senior position at the RNC, or the legions of followers who turned out [to] cheer him on during debates. As these alarms were sounding, Jewish Republicans and other pro-Israel Republicans utterly failed to counter Paul's influence. Now they will be sitting respectfully -- or perhaps even applauding -- while their Party honors one of the greatest opponents of the U.S.-Israel relationship on Capitol Hill.”

The convention is expected to play a short film in tribute to Paul on Tuesday, the Romney campaign said Friday, according to TPM. And Sen. Rand PaulRand PaulSenate gears up for fight on Trump's 0B Saudi Arabia arms sale Paul: 0B Saudi arms deal ‘a travesty’ Senate feels pressure for summer healthcare vote MORE (R-Ky.), who shares many of his father's libertarian and isolationist beliefs, is scheduled to speak at the convention on Monday.

"Paying tribute to this man who disparaged the U.S.-Israel relationship on Iranian television and empathized with Iran's nuclear weapons program -- on top of the history of his hate-filled newsletters -- is a national disgrace," said Harris. "Romney and the RNC should cancel the tribute and end this dangerous strategic partnership once and for all."