Bernie Sanders slams 'absurd' anti-BDS bill introduced mid-shutdown

Leroy Wright
January 9, 2019

The bill includes measures supporting Israel and Jordan and slapping sanctions on Syrians involved in war crimes at a time of growing unease in Congress over the Trump administration's shifts in the region.

Leveritt didn't take kindly to the idea of anyone telling him what he could or couldn't say-especially state legislators.

The anti-BDS legislation has been fiercely criticised by civil rights organisations such as the American Civil Liberties Union as well as by progressives and liberals across the country. "It's about foreign policy", Sen.

Angry at the government shutdown and peeved over attempts to stifle anti-Israeli boycotts, Senate Democrats on Tuesday filibustered a bill that would have strengthened US relationships in the Middle East while punishing the anti-Israel boycott movement. We have consistently - and successfully - argued this position in situations where government entities have threatened to boycott a company based upon its constitutionally protected speech and associational choices. An Arkansas judge is now weighing whether to uphold the law or strike it down. Pence is also set to speak with Senate Republicans on Wednesday. Marco Rubio's "Combatting BDS Act", which seeks to counter the global Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement against Israel over its treatment of Palestinians and the settlements.

"It's absurd that the first bill during the shutdown is legislation which punishes Americans who exercise their constitutional right to engage in political activity", Sanders tweeted. "The legislation, like the unconstitutional state anti-boycott laws it condones, sends a message to Americans that they will be penalized if they dare to disagree with their government". And they should never have the support of anyone in the United States. Tlaib and Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., are the only Democrats in either chamber of Congress to voice support for the BDS movement.

As Feinstein noted, she is an Israel supporter and a Jewish-American, which makes her statement all the more important-it implicitly hits at the cheap smear that any criticism of Israel is also anti-Semitic.

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The real rationale behind Schumer's block-and-tackling has to do with the Democratic Party's newfound warmth toward anti-Semitism.

The Israeli government praised USA congressional efforts to thwart the boycott movement. "They're threatening to shut down efforts to protect our allies and strengthen our relationship with Israel".

In support of Israel, Rubio's bills would affirm the legal authority of state and local governments to restrict contracts and take other actions against those "engaged in BDS conduct". We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

While formal negotiations to reopen the federal government haven't gone anywhere so far as we can tell, the president clearly thinks his latest gambit - a prime-time speech on border issues before his own trip to the border to dramatize the phantom specter of an immigration "crisis" - will move this thing along.

The bill fell three votes shy of the 60 needed to overcome a filibuster, with just four Democrats joining the GOP. Cory Booker, Oregon Sen.

The bill is also unlikely to receive support in the House. Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin of Maryland, argued over the weekend that senators should vote first on a measure approved by the House last week to reopen the government.

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