Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie, a staunch libertarian and a member of the Republican Party, has repeatedly bucked his party’s establishment in opposing various measures relating to Israel, placing him in the unlikely company of far-left members of the “Squad.”
Massie’s voting pattern diverges significantly from his Republican colleagues, especially in the context of Israel and antisemitism.
A Republican Capitol Hill insider expressed frustration, noting Massie’s tendency to vote in line with the Squad due to the Republicans’ control of the House.
“He probably votes with the squad more than any other Republican in the House,” the insider told The New York Post. “He votes no on everything and because Republicans control the House, the squad is also going to be voting no on everything.”
On October 25, the House voted to condemn Hamas following an attack on October 7 that resulted in the death of 1,300 Israeli civilians. The resolution passed with a vote of 412-10, with Massie being the only Republican among the 10 dissenters.
“I was opposed to the measure because of its call for sanctions, which I consider a prelude to war,” Massie said.
Another instance of Massie’s divergence came on November 2, when the House passed a resolution condemning support for Hamas and Hezbollah on college campuses — a measure which Massie condemned as censorious and incompatible with free speech. The resolution passed with a 396-23 vote, with Massie again being the sole Republican dissenter.
That same day, the House approved a $14.3 billion aid package to Israel. Massie opposed this measure as well, siding with Squad members. His opposition stemmed from a longstanding stance against foreign aid.
“We simply can’t afford it,” he said on X.
Massie also voted against the censure of Rep. Rashida Tlaib, who had defended her calls for the destruction of Israel, citing free-speech grounds for his decision. In 2019, he was the only Republican opposing a bill condemning the antisemitic Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel. In May 2022, he stood alone in opposing a House resolution broadly condemning antisemitism, with a vote of 420-to-1.
Massie, who has been serving since 2012, is as known for his humble background as he is for his maverick role among House Republicans.. The son of a West Virginia beer distributor, he holds two engineering degrees from MIT, owns numerous patents, and was a small business owner before entering Congress. He resides in an off-the-grid house in rural Kentucky, which he built himself. In a 2018 interview with the Austrian Economics Center, he explained his libertarian beliefs, emphasizing the value of freedom and independence.
Massie’s contrarian voting record has drawn the ire of pro-Israel activists, who are now targeting him with primary challenges. The United Democracy Project, a pro-Israel super PAC affiliated with AIPAC, announced a significant ad campaign against Massie and two other members. Patrick Dorton, a spokesperson for the PAC, told Jewish Insider, “Their constituents deserve to know that these members of Congress refused to vote on the House floor to condemn the horrific Hamas terrorism attacks on October 7.”
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