Utah Senator Orrin Hatch isn’t the only Mormon legislator with a soft spot for Jewish traditions.
Senate majority leader Harry Reid’s wife, Landra (née Gould), was raised Jewish, and the Reid family has a mezuzah on the doorpost of their Searchlight, Nev. home in honor of that heritage, a spokeswoman for Senator Reid confirmed. (Senator Hatch wears a mezuzah around his neck, as this Tablet music video shows.)
Both Senator Reid and his wife are converts to Mormonism; Hatch was born into the Mormon faith.
According to this New Yorker profile of the current Senate Majority Leader, Reid’s eventually close relationship with Landra’s parents got off to a rough start. Mr. Gould apparently tried to break up the couple because the Goulds “wanted their daughter to marry a Jewish boy,” according to Reid.
The seven astronauts aboard the shuttle Endeavor signed on to repair the International Space Station on their recent journey into space. But one of them, Garrett Reisman, also decided to pursue his own personal interior design agenda upon arrival: He put up a mezuzah.
“I did not consult any rabbi, so I hope I did not get into any trouble,” Reisman, reportedly the first Jew to inhabit the space station, told Haaretz.
Having safely returned from the expedition, Garrett traveled last week to Israel for the fourth Ilan Ramon International Space Conference.