WNYC’s Brian Lehrer grilled Barron — who had referred to Israel as a “terrorist state” — on whether he’s an “enemy of Israel,” as Jewish lawmakers suggested at a press conference last week. Former New York Mayor Ed Koch branded the Brooklyn Democrat an “anti-Semite” and a “racist.”
“I’m not going to respond to Koch,” Barron said. “My foreign policy plan does not start with Israel, it starts with Africa.”
He proceeded to tick off his foreign policy to-do list, coupling it with relevant issues in each region that he would tackle as a Congressman. Second comes the Caribbean, where he would focus on “Fair Trade” laws, “then Latin America,” “then Europe,” where “[we need] to stabilize these economies,” “then the Middle East.” Barron noted to Lehrer that “there are several countries in the Middle East,” and stated his view that “we should establish a Palestinian state.”
Barron also offered a fairly realistic view of his legislative agenda’s actual prospects.
“I put it in the context of being real — we’re going to a House of Representatives of mostly Republicans. In that context I might never get a bill passed, but we are going to bring a movement,” he said. “The Civil Rights Act was passed by a movement, not by Senators or the House of Representatives,” he said.
Barron conceded that his legislative impact may be limited.
“I don’t know if I’m going to get a single bill passed and I don’t care,” he said.