William Hagerty was born in 1959. He is running to succeed retiring Senator Lamar Alexander in the race for Tennessee’s Senate seat.

Bill Hagerty is a businessman, politician and diplomat. He served as the U.S. Ambassador to Japan from 2017 to 2019. Prior to that, he was the managing director and co-founder of Hagerty Peterson and Company, a private equity investment firm.

Hagerty served as an economic advisor and White House Fellow under President George H. W. Bush. From 2011 to 2014, he served as commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. He has served on the board of CyMed, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Ryman Hospitality, Pinnacle Financial Partners, and more. In 2008, he served as the national finance chairman of Mitt Romney’s 2008 presidential campaign.

The Republican primary in Tennessee took place on August 6, 2020. Hagerty won the primary with about 52% of the vote.

Below is Bill Hagerty’s record and public positions on issues important to the Jewish community.

Hagerty believes that the U.S. has “a moral obligation to protect Israel” and that “supporting Israel protects our interests in the Middle East.” He has argued that “the path to peace in the Middle East runs through a strong U.S.-Israel relationship and, as such, we must always stand with Israel.”

Hagerty opposed the nuclear deal with Iran and supported President Trump’s decision to pull out of the agreement. He stated that taking the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal was “a critical step” and warned that the idea of getting back into the agreement is “a huge strategic threat for Israel.”

Hagerty supports the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and believes that such as solution would allow “Israelis to live peacefully and ensure Palestine is demilitarized is the best path to stability and peace.” Asked about his position on a possible annexation by Israel of some land in the West Bank, Hagerty said that he is supportive, arguing that “this is an area where a lot of the hostility comes from and Israel needs to secure the area.”

Hagerty has been vocal in his opposition to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Calling it “an attempt to delegitimize Israel”, Hagerty has said that “we have to push back against the boycott of Israel.” He has argued in an op-ed that “the BDS movement is fanning anti-Semitic flames.”

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