Ushi Teitelbaum: Longing for Economic Stability

"I want to be able to afford my car, my grocery bill, my rent ... Since Joe Biden became president, the economy has been pretty wild."
By | Apr 16, 2024
JPVP 2024
Ushi Teitelbaum

This interview is part of Moment’s Jewish Political Voices Project. To learn more about the project, click here. To see our other participants, click here. To see all posts from Ushi, click here.

Age: 26
Occupation: President & Founder, Sky High PR

Location: Brooklyn, NY
Party Registration: Republican
Jewish Denomination: Orthodox
2020 Vote: Donald Trump
Current 2024 Vote: Undecided

Is the Hamas attack of October 7 influencing your vote in November?

I’m very appreciative of President Biden’s strong support for Israel. For me, it’s been a little bit of a surprise. A lot of the young Democrats aren’t supportive of Israel and it worries me. When it comes to the 2024 election, I’m going to be looking at the bigger picture. You know, when Trump was president, we had zero wars start. There was a lot of tension in the Middle East or different places in the world, but Trump had a strong stance, a strong policy of “You don’t mess with us; you don’t fight us.” He had Iran essentially under control. And now there are two ongoing wars, and the fight in Yemen. A war between Taiwan and China could start any moment. I was very supportive of President Trump and his policies while he was in office.

What are you seeing in your area politically?

In the Orthodox world I live in here in Brooklyn, antisemitism is definitely on the rise. People aren’t safe going to work on the subway or being on the street. It’s not the same as it was 10-15 years ago. There are Jewish patrol groups, and there’s what the NYPD is providing—they try to do whatever they can. But I don’t always feel safe. Local people and local elected officials try to do whatever they can to keep that in check. But the Jewish community is strong together. We won’t bend. And I feel that.

What issues are the most important to you?

My number-one issue is the economy. I want to be able to afford my car, my grocery bill, my rent. And I just feel that since Joe Biden became president, the economy has been pretty wild. Number two is, I live in New York City, I go to Penn Station, and I see all the time that there’s illegal immigrants filling up New York. And we have a president who hasn’t done much about that. So that worries me.

Is the rise of antisemitism influencing your vote or affecting your political outlook?

I was at a conference in Puerto Rico a few months ago—a political conference of NY elected officials. I had my yarmulke on and of course I had my payos (side curls), and someone screamed from a car window, “Yo, F—ing Jew! What you’re doing in Israel is a shame!” I put on a hoodie just to cover my yarmulke and payos because I don’t know who’s next. 

Are you hopeful about America’s political future?

I think that the media loves to put up a dark message on everything. But inflation rates are going down, and post-COVID, people like me travel more, go out more, spend more time with family. And technology is thriving. I don’t see dark days. I see beautiful, light days ahead.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.