Newt Gingrich's latest robo-call attacking Mitt Romney sets a new level for harshness: The GOP front-runner once voted to deprive Holocaust survivors of the kosher food they ate in Massachusetts nursing homes when he was governor. That sounds monstrous! And in Florida which has high number of Jewish and senior voters, potentially devastating. It's also not exactly true. For the record, here's the text of the call, via Huffington Post (you can listen to it on YouTube here):
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.
The claim was mentioned in a New York Post story that went live on Friday, but it had already been disproved, according to Commentary magazine, by the Jewish Advocate way back in 2003. When Romney vetoed the spending bill, the Jewish Advocate noted that while the bill would close kosher kitchens in some nursing homes, residents wouldn't be deprived of their kosher food. "Coolidge House would continue to provide kosher meals either by serving pre-packaged food, contracting with a caterer to prepare and deliver meals, or bringing food over from the Heritage House, GEC’s nursing home at Cleveland Circle."