Nominee who called Biden a ‘senile gaffe machine’ withdrawn by State Department
The State Department on Tuesday withdrew the nomination of an Ivy League professor who called then-candidate Joe Biden a ‘senile gaffe machine’ and criticized other officials for their pro-Israel views.
Prof. James Cavallaro was nominated last week to serve on the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in the Organization of American States. But the State Department’s link to that announcement no longer works, and spokesman Ned Price told reporters Tuesday that the nomination was withdrawn after his Cavallaro’s past controversial tweets were discovered.
‘His statements clearly do not reflect U.S. policy,’ Price said. ‘They are not a reflection of what we believe, and they are inappropriate, to say the least. We have decided to withdraw our nomination of this individual.’
‘We were not aware of these statements and writings that he produced,’ Price acknowledged.
Cavallaro’s past remarks were first reported by The Algemeiner, a non-profit news organization that covers the Middle East, Israel and ‘matters of Jewish interest around the world.’ That outlet found the 2020 tweet that criticized then-candidate Biden and several others – all of which Cavallaro has since taken down.
Another one of his tweets criticized House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., as being ‘Bought. Purchased. Controlled’ by pro-Israel groups. In another instance, Cavallaro described Israel as an ‘apartheid state.’
Cavallaro put up a new Twitter threat on Tuesday that said State had informed him that it was this last tweet that disqualified him from serving on the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
‘Today, the State Dept informed me that they were withdrawing my candidacy because of my view that the conditions in Israel/Palestine meet the definition of apartheid under international human rights law,’ he tweeted.
He also said he had removed ‘many’ of his previous tweets because he was ‘proactively & in good faith addressing concerns the @StateDept had raised during the vetting process.’
Cavallaro also argued that his nomination would not have affected U.S. policy on Israel, and he said that his removal from the process would deprive the Commission of a ‘committed, experienced, advocate for human rights in the Americas.’