A new robocall from the Newt Gingrich campaign is alleging that Mitt Romney forced Holocaust survivors to eat non-kosher food while he was the governor of Massachusetts.
Audio and text of the call are below, courtesy of The Huffington Post:
“As governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney vetoed a bill paying for kosher food for our seniors in nursing homes. Holocaust survivors, who for the first time, were forced to eat non-kosher, because Romney thought $5 was too much to pay for our grandparents to eat kosher. Where is Mitt Romney’s compassion for our seniors? Tuesday you can end Mitt Romney’s hypocrisy on religious freedom, with a vote for Newt Gingrich. Paid for by Newt 2012.”
Gingrich has also delivered the kosher food attack in person. He told a Pensacola crowd on Monday:
“Let me note in passing that Romney as governor imposed on Catholic hospitals provisions against their religious strictures and Romney as governor eliminated kosher food from retired Jewish senior citizens on Medicaid and he has no understanding of the importance of conscience and importance of religious liberty in this country.
As Commentary magazine points out, however, Gingrich has his facts mixed up in this case. Romney’s veto did not eliminate kosher food, and it would not have forced Holocaust survivors to eat non-kosher; it merely would’ve required nursing homes to bus in kosher food instead of preparing it in their own kitchens. Furthermore, the issue became irrelevant after the Massachusetts state legislature overrode Romney’s veto.
These facts did not deter Gingrich’s campaign from pouncing on an opportunity to present Romney as insensitive to Florida’s large Jewish and senior citizen constituencies.
Ironically, as Gingrich’s campaign accused Romney of violating the religious freedoms of Holocaust survivors, Gingrich himself was on the campaign trail on Tuesday morning attacking Romney for engaging in negative, dishonest campaigning.