As Democratic Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania appears set on carving his own path through the Senate’s political landscape, he is hearing an earful from critics who oppose his condemnation of Hamas.
“Pro-Palestinian protesters shouted down Democratic Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania on Thursday after he maintained that Hamas should be condemned for the Oct. 7 terrorist attack against Israel,” a Daily Caller reporter posted on X.
“Anyone, everyone should be condemning Hamas,” Fetterman said in an accompanying video. I don’t know why [the] U.N. hasn’t condemned Hamas.”
After Palestinian supporters began to heckle him, with one shouting, “what about Palestinian children?” Fetterman turned his back and left, saying, “Hamas should be condemned.”
WATCH: Pro-Palestinian protesters shouted down Democratic Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania on Thursday after he maintained that Hamas should be condemned for the Oct. 7 terrorist attack against Israel.@DailyCaller pic.twitter.com/YTlH7XLvH7
— Jennie Taer 🇮🇱🇺🇸 (@JennieSTaer) December 14, 2023
In recent weeks, Fetterman has stood with Israel even as the far-left edge of the progressive movement has criticized Israel for its attacks on Gaza. So where does that leave him on the political spectrum?
“I’m not a progressive,” Fetterman told NBC in a new interview.
“I just think I’m a Democrat that is very committed to choice and other things. But with Israel, I’m going to be on the right side of that. And immigration is something near and dear to me, and I think we do have to effectively address it as well.”
Pennsylvania senator John Fetterman, a Democrat, has angered many on the left after he waved an Israeli flag by anti-Israel protesters who were being arrested at the U.S. Capitol. pic.twitter.com/z8u9gfkY2E
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) November 10, 2023
Fetterman said the reality of the southern border requires action.
“It’s a reasonable conversation,” he told NBC. “Until somebody can say there’s an explanation on what we can do when 270,000 people are being encountered on the border, not including the ones, of course, that we don’t know about,” he said. “To put that in reference, that is essentially the size of Pittsburgh, the second-largest city in Pennsylvania.”
Fetterman admitted that it is “not ideal to have this conversation” about the southern border while addressing military aid to Ukraine and Israel, but said “it’s still one that we should have,” particularly now that Republicans have linked the issues.
“Progressives better do that because we can’t leave Israel — we can’t sell them out, and we can’t sell Ukraine out, and we have to deliver on this,” Fetterman said.
“I just would very much like to get a deal to deliver this critical aid,” he said.
Fetterman’s stance has furrowed the brow of progressives.
“People liked Fetterman because of his populist outsiderness and empathy toward all kinds of people,” Waleed Shahid, a progressive organizer, told NBC.
“But his extreme jingoistic support of this war has made many people feel that he holds a hierarchy of human value where Israeli lives are simply more important to him than Palestinians.”
John Fetterman is starting to break away from the Democrat Party on immigration.
This is pretty surprising stuff
Here’s a recent statement he’s made:
“I hope Democrats can understand that it isn’t xenophobic to be concerned about the border. It’s a reasonable conversation, and… pic.twitter.com/0i5vK1Kcw9
— Joey Mannarino (@JoeyMannarinoUS) December 8, 2023
Others said Fetterman is just being Fetterman, and that’s just fine.
“What I see — and I’ve had the chance to run into him a couple of times recently — is a man that is doing well, that is his own person that stands on his own two feet, even if it’s in shorts,” Democratic Rep. Madeleine Dean of Pennsylvania said.
“And he’s standing up for what he believes in. So I wouldn’t characterize it another way. I’m just happy he’s serving,” she said.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.