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By Mae Slater on
 April 1, 2024

John Fetterman facing an exodus of aides over his pro-Israel stance

In a significant shake-up, three high-ranking communication officials from Senator John Fetterman's team have stepped down.

Fox News reported that these departures come as Fetterman faces backlash for his pro-Israel views and critique of immigration policies, marking a stark divergence from typical Democratic positions.

The resignations include Joe Calvello, the Director of Communications; Nicholas Gavio, Deputy Communication Director; and Emma Mustion, Press and Digital Aide. All have moved to positions in other politically aligned offices within a month, highlighting a notable shift in Fetterman's office dynamics.

A Shift Towards Divergent Political Paths

Joe Calvello now serves as Chief Strategy Officer for Chicago's Mayor Brandon Johnson, aligning with a city known for its robust political scene. This move signifies a notable transition from federal to municipal governance, showcasing Calvello's adaptability and political acumen.

Nicholas Gavio's transition to the Working Families Party as the Mid-Atlantic Communications Director underscores a shift towards more progressive political advocacy. The Working Families Party's emphasis on grassroots mobilization and progressive policies presents a new avenue for Gavio's skills in communication and strategy.

Emma Mustion has taken up the role of press secretary in Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey's campaign office, indicating a desire to remain closely connected to Pennsylvania's political landscape. Mustion's move suggests a continuing commitment to Democratic campaigns at the state level, with a focus on supporting candidates with aligned political views.

Fetterman's Unwavering Stance on Israel

Senator Fetterman's outspoken support for Israel, especially following the October 7 massacre, has set him apart from many of his Democratic peers. His firm stance in favor of Israel's right to defend itself against Hamas has stirred considerable debate within his party and among his staff.

His criticism of Vice President Kamala Harris' comments on Israel further highlights his distinct position on this issue. Fetterman's assertion that "Israel has the right to prosecute Hamas to surrender or to be eliminated" reflects a strong conviction in Israel's defense strategies, emphasizing the complexity of his views within the broader Democratic discourse.

An office-wide email from October, authored by Calvello, underscored the importance of consistency with Fetterman's policies, especially on social media. This directive aimed at ensuring a unified front within the office, even as it grappled with internal disagreements over Fetterman's foreign policy stances.

Addressing the Controversy Head-On

In response to the ongoing controversy, Fetterman expressed confusion over the backlash against his pro-Israel stance during a CNN interview with Jake Tapper. He underscored his commitment to standing with Israel, reflecting on the challenges of navigating complex geopolitical issues while maintaining personal convictions.

The senator's office has experienced significant changes following these developments. The departure of key communication staffers indicates a potential realignment of Fetterman's team, possibly in response to the evolving political landscape and his distinct policy positions.

Joe Calvello, upon accepting his new role, expressed it as an "absolute honor and a privilege," highlighting the enthusiasm and dedication of Fetterman's former staff as they embark on new professional journeys.

Conclusion: A New Chapter for Fetterman's Office

In conclusion, the resignation of three top aides from Senator John Fetterman's office underscores a period of transition and realignment within his team. These moves come amid Fetterman's controversial stances on Israel and immigration, setting him apart from traditional Democratic positions. As Fetterman navigates the fallout and reinforces his policy views, his office's future direction and the impact of these resignations on his political trajectory remain to be seen.

Written By:
Mae Slater

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