Today, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America – the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization – joins the citizens of New York, the United States and the world in mourning the passing of Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
Over the course of his storied career in the public policy arena, Senator Moynihan was an unparalleled friend to our community’s values and interests ranging from U.S. policy toward Israel to equitable federal support for parochial education. Upon his retirement from the Senate, we were privileged to honor Senator Moynihan at a dinner for the Union’s Institute for Public Affairs (but one of scores of Orthodox Union events in which Sen. Moynihan participated). On that occasion, we said:
In our collective communal memories, the name Daniel Patrick Moynihan will always be synonymous with his successful sixteen-year effort to repeal the odious U.N. General Assembly resolution equating Zionism with racism and his ongoing struggle to have the United States acknowledge Jerusalem as the capitol of Israel. Senator Moynihan has always been, as former Prime Minister Menachem Begin so aptly declared, “a friend for all seasons, for all reasons.”
The Orthodox Union’s friendship with Daniel Patrick Moynihan began in 1963 when he worked with our leadership while advising President Kennedy on federal aid to education. Since then, and throughout his Senate tenure, Mr. Moynihan, and his remarkable wife Elizabeth, was a valued ally to the Orthodox Jewish community. As a token of esteem to this relationship, the Union named the New York segment of its summer legislative internship program in Senator Moynihan’s name.
Harvey Blitz, president of the Orthodox Union, stated today that “the Orthodox Jewish community shares with all our fellow citizens the deep sense of sorrow and loss from the passing of Daniel Patrick Moynihan. His counsel, wisdom and humor will be sorely missed. May his family be comforted and may his memory and legacy be a blessing for us all.”