House Members Urge Trump to Appoint Anti-Semitism Envoy
WASHINGTON – A bipartisan group of 167 Members of Congress are calling on President Donald Trump to keep the State Department’s Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism in a letter released on Monday.
“As Members of Congress who care deeply about anti-Semitism at home and abroad, we urge you to maintain and prioritize the appointment of the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism,” the letter states. The initiative was spearheaded by Representative Eliot Engel (D-NY), Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Nita Lowey (D-NY), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Ted Deutch (D-FL), and Marc Veasey (D-TX).
According to a Bloomberg report last month, the White House was considering eliminating the Anti-Semitism Envoy in addition to other budgetary cuts.
Last year, anti-Semitic acts plagued Jewish communities across the world. In Paris, a Jewish boy was physically assaulted near a Synagogue and called a “dirty Jew,” a Holocaust memorial was vandalized in Hungary, and a 54 year Uruguay Jewish old man was stabbed to death in a hate crime.
The United States has also witnessed a recent spike in anti-Semitic incidents including bomb threats of JCCs and Jewish cemetery vandalisms.
“The Office of the Special Envoy enables the U.S. to show the world its commitment to these ideals, particularly at a time when anti-Semitism is dangerously on the rise,” the letter explains.
Former Special Envoy Ira Forman told Jewish Insider on February 28, “I can’t believe someone at the White House won’t have better sense than to realize that this is a disaster. I just can’t believe that they would even think of this given the relatively small budget needed to run this office.”