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October 22, 2016

Curt Schilling: How can Jewish people be Democrats?

Former Phillies pitcher says party is anti-Israel

Former Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Curt Schilling asked CNN anchor Jake Tapper to explain how people of the Jewish faith could support the Democratic Party Friday.

The former MLB star turned conservative pundit was on Tapper's show "The Lead" to discuss his potential campaign to unseat U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts in 2018, according to The Hill.

Schilling steered the conversation toward Tapper's faith. Tapper is Jewish, and Schilling questioned him on why other Jewish people are Democrats, citing the party's alleged "anti-Jewish" stance. Here's what Schilling said, per USA Today:

"I don't understand — and this is, maybe this is the amateur, non-politician in me — I don't understand how people of Jewish faith can back the Democratic Party," Schilling said, "which over the last 50 years has been so clearly anti-Israel, so clearly anti-Jewish Israel.

"I don't know what else would need to be done, said or happen for people to understand that they don't — the Democratic Party is alive for Israel only because we have agreements in place to make them have to be."

Tapper responded by saying that he does not support either party, but suggested that the possible reason for some Jewish people being Democrats is because of the party's support for social welfare programs.

Schilling went on to address the incident with Chris Matthews on MSNBC later in the day. Here's an excerpt of that exchange, via Media Matters:

"Well, I mean Chris, I'm apparently an anti-Semite now, because I had the gall and the audacity to ask someone of the Jewish faith why or how they believe people of the Jewish faith vote Democrat! I mean, god forbid I listen to someone of the faith, rather than the media, who clearly are not biased and don't have an agenda. I mean, that to me is just common sense."

Schilling said he wasn't trying to be offensive or racist, and when Matthews said that you can't ask one person of a faith to speak for their entire religion, Schilling claimed that Liberals do the same thing with Christians all the time.

Schilling has been a prominent voice on the campaign trail. A Donald Trump supporter, he caused controversy in 2015 for comparing Muslims to Nazis, and was canned from his ESPN gig in April after sharing a highly controversial anti-transgender meme on Facebook

As noted, Schilling is considering running for senate in Massachusetts against Elizabeth Warren, pending approval from his wife.