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Rosen, Lankford to introduce bipartisan antisemitism resolution urging White House action

This bill marks the first bipartisan legislation in response to the recent spike in antisemitic violence

U.S. Senate

Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and James Lankford (R-OK)

Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and James Lankford (R-OK) are set to introduce a bipartisan resolution condemning the recent uptick in antisemitic violence and urging President Joe Biden to take steps to combat it, Jewish Insider has learned. This would mark the first bipartisan legislation in response to the recent surge, and follows a resolution introduced Tuesday by more than a dozen Republicans.

The resolution enumerates multiple recent incidents of antisemitism in the United Kingdom, Germany, Los Angeles, New York, Arizona and Illinois, as well as antisemitic comments from Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, which came in the wake of the recent conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. It also lays out findings that antisemitism, antisemitic hate crimes and threats to synagogues are increasing in the United States and around the world.

In addition to condemning the recent increase in antisemitic incidents, the resolution urges Biden to nominate an ambassador to monitor and combat antisemitism; engage international organizations to combat antisemitism; advance Holocaust education through the Never Again Education Act; “allocat[e] sufficient resources” for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program — which provides funding for houses of worship and nonprofits to shore up their security; and produce a report on the U.S. threat level of antisemitism.

“The Senate… unequivocally condemns the recent rise in antisemitic violence and harassment targeting Jewish Americans, and stands in solidarity with those affected by antisemitism [and] recommits to combating antisemitism in all forms,” the resolution reads.

A letter soliciting cosponsors for the legislation set a deadline of 1:30 p.m. on Thursday for additional senators to sign on, indicating that Rosen and Lankford plan to introduce the legislation prior to the Memorial Day recess.

The Rosen-Lankford resolution comes on the heels of a Republican Senate resolution introduced on Tuesday that condemns antisemitic violence and anti-Israel rhetoric — but does not urge further action — and a GOP House bill modifying sentencing provisions for repeat hate crime offenders and instructing the Department of Justice to review antisemitic hate crimes and issue guidance and a report.

Rosen told JI on Tuesday she had not seen the Senate GOP resolution but “plan[ned] to continue working alongside Senator Lankford and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to combat antisemitism.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) are also promoting a Senate bill that has yet to be formally introduced, aimed at addressing antisemitic hate crimes.