Pop Quiz

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This group’s annual conference begins today in Washington D.C. An estimated 6500 people will attend the conference, including half the House and Senate plus such congressional leaders as Dick Durbin, Eric Cantor, Steny Hoyer and Jon Kyl.  Vice President Joe Biden speaks on Tuesday. Other speakers include John Kerry, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.  As a candidate, Barack Obama addressed the conference last year.  The event typically draws more members of Congress than any outside a joint session or State of the Union address.

This group is:

A) The National Organization for Women (NOW)

B) The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)

C) The National Rifle Association (NRA)

D) The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)

E) The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO)

Answer after the jump:

The correct answer is:

D) The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)

AIPAC is a lobbying organization that advocates for pro-Israel policies to Congress and the White House.  Glenn Greenwald writes:

With rare exception, Congressional action that AIPAC demands — even on as controversial matter as the Israeli attack on Gaza — not only passes the Congress, but often with virtual unanimity.  Is there anyone who disputes that AIPAC is one of the most influential and powerful lobbying groups in the U.S., if not the most influential and powerful?

AIPAC is not a Jewish lobby, it lobbies for the nation of Israel.  While many people have no problem with that fact, can you imagine if the most influential and powerful lobbying group in the United States represented Mexico, Japan or China?

This year’s AIPAC conference has attracted extra attention because on Friday the US Department of Justice announced it is dismissing charges of espionage against two former AIPAC officials. They were accused of accepting military secrets from a former DOD official and aide to Douglas Feith named Larry Franklin, who was convicted of espionage and sentenced to 12 years in prison.

For three  somewhat different takes on the AIPAC espionage case read Jeffrey Goldberg, Glenn Greenwald and Cannonfire.

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