Statement Regarding Voting

Posted on October 28, 2002 In Press Releases

Dear Rabbis and Synagogue Leaders,

As we anticipate the upcoming election season, the Institute for Public Affairs of the Orthodox Union is urging synagogues, yeshivot, and schools across the country to play an active role in the political process. You may have heard from us in the past on the importance of being registered to vote. Now it is time to remember how important it is for Orthodox Jews to vote this coming Election Day.

We call on you as community leaders to urge your friends, family, and all colleagues to vote in the upcoming election. Orthodox Jews have important issues at stake on the public policy agenda that deeply affect our lives. Issues of racism and discrimination, freedom of religion, education and health care profoundly influence our day-to-day existence. Issues regarding foreign policy including Israel, endangered Jewry, terrorism, and other global affairs affect the quality of Jewish life in America, Israel, and all over the world.

It is crucial that we exercise our democratic choice in voting for those who best represent our interests. While American Jews have voted in overwhelming numbers in the past, unfortunately this is no longer the case. In order to make sure that we have a say in the formation of public policy, we must not forfeit our power to elect a particular candidate to office. We cannot surrender our ability to influence our destiny as American Jews nor must we allow others to make choices for us.

As you address important current events and issues in your schools and shuls, we cannot urge you enough to emphasize the importance of our precious right to vote. This right guarantees our freedoms as Jews and makes sure that our voice counts. If we do not vote, the ability of the Jewish community to shape the world in which we live is greatly diminished.

We take this opportunity to wish you and your families a happy and healthy year.


Richard B. Stone
Nathan Diament
Betty Ehrenberg
Director, International Affairs
and Communal Relations