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GOP Senate candidate said Republicans have 'dual loyalties' to Israel

GOP Senate candidate said Republicans have 'dual loyalties' to Israel
© Greg Nash

Former Rep. Jason LewisJason LewisRep. Angie Craig defends Minnesota House seat in race clouded by legal confusion Smith wins reelection in Minnesota Klobuchar 'feeling good' about Democrats taking control of Senate MORE (R-Minn.), who is running for Senate in Minnesota, said in 2013 that the Republican Party had "dual loyalties" to Israel, according to CNN.

The U.S.'s continued support of Israel, Lewis said on a radio show in February 2013, was due to a "very strong American Jewish lobby," and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. He added that many in the party viewed Israel as the "51st state." 

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Lewis's comments were backing Defense Secretary Chuck HagelCharles (Chuck) Timothy Hagel15 former Defense officials back waiver for Austin to serve as Defense secretary The Hill's Morning Report - Biden asks Congress to expand largest relief response in U.S. history John Kirby to reprise role as Pentagon press secretary under Biden MORE, who underwent scrutiny during his 2013 confirmation process for his use of the phrase "Jewish lobby" in 2006, The Washington Post reported then

When questioned about his past words, Lewis called inquiries "pathetic" and "worn-out." 

"Actions speak louder than words, and the action that Congressman Lewis took in the 115th Congress to strengthen and support the U.S.- Israeli relationship is virtually unmatched, evidenced by his voting record," Lewis's campaign manager Tom Szymanski said in an email to The Hill. "The voters of Minnesota will see right through these false attacks next November."

Lewis then called out Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarDemocrats poised to impeach Trump again Pence opposes removing Trump under 25th Amendment: reports Pelosi vows to impeach Trump again — if Pence doesn't remove him first MORE (D-Minn.), characterizing her criticisms of the country's relationship with Israel "genuinely anti-Israel."

Lewis is one of two candidates campaigning for the Republican nominee and would face Sen. Tina SmithTina Flint SmithSenate Democrats file ethics complaint against Hawley, Cruz over Capitol attack Senate majority battle snags Biden Cabinet hopefuls Smith wins reelection in Minnesota MORE (D-Minn.) in the general election. Smith won a special election earlier this year and is serving out the remainder of former Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenHarrison seen as front-runner to take over DNC at crucial moment The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC - Trump, Biden clash over transition holdup, pandemic plans The Hill's Morning Report - Fearing defeat, Trump claims 'illegal' ballots MORE's term.