Fox News reports that Democrat Mondaire Jones, a former House member running again in New York’s 17th district, apologized a day after sending a message that many social media users, including members of his own political party, viewed as antisemitic.
Following California Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy’s ouster from the speaker role on Wednesday, Jones took to X (formerly Twitter) to post a picture of McCarthy wearing a yarmulke and eating with Jewish leaders, adding, “Well this was a waste of everyone’s time.”
The post garnered backlash from other members of his political party, including Liz Gereghty, the sister of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who is facing Jones in the Democratic primary.
“If Mondaire Jones didn’t realize that his tweet could be viewed as antisemitic and elicit vile comments in response, I would question his judgment,” Gereghty said. “If he did it anyway, that’s far, far worse. As someone with a large social media platform running for Congress, he has a responsibility to hold himself to the highest possible standards and I would hope he is more thoughtful in the future, because the rise of hate in this nation is currently one of the greatest threats to our safety and stability.”
Reps. Jared Moskowitz of Florida and Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, both Democrats, initially laid into Jones, but then deleted their posts.
“This was not a waste of time. It is never a waste of time to meet with religious leaders,” Moskowitz wrote. “Additionally, I doubt your choice of religion to highlight here was coincidental.”
“This disgusting post is insulting to Jewish people and every person of faith. Meeting with religious leaders is critical to understanding the needs of our communities. This antisemitic rhetoric is deeply concerning,” Gottheimer wrote in his post.
Jones ultimately pulled his post with an apology, saying people had misconstrued what he had intended in the message.
“Yesterday, I posted a tweet that was too open to misinterpretation,” he wrote on Wednesday. “My point was to communicate that Kevin McCarthy, and by extension Mike Lawler, cannot possibly deliver for communities in Rockland because he’s no longer Speaker.”