McConnell: House Should Pass Senate’s Strong Bipartisan Legislation to Stand Against Anti-Semitism
‘I guess this is where we are. Elected members of the Democratic Party are openly urging their leadership not to make them vote on condemning anti-Semitism. Because for some reason it is just too tough a vote. What a sad and bizarre situation we find in the House. I urge the distinguished Speaker of the House to do the right thing. Don’t let these far-left voices run the House. At long last, bring S. 1 up for a vote.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks on the Senate floor regarding pending House action on the Senate-passed, Strengthening America's Security in the Middle East Act (S.1):
“This week, the Senate has attended to one of this body’s unique responsibilities relating to foreign affairs: The ratification of treaties. We’ve ratified bilateral tax agreements with four trading partners: Spain, Switzerland, Japan, and Luxembourg. Measures like these bring clarity, certainty, and fairness to international commerce. They ensure U.S. citizens and businesses have a level playing field without duplicative tax burdens. And they make the United States a more inviting destination for foreign investment.
“These newly-ratified treaties will provide immediate and much-needed relief to employers in every corner of our country. They’ll reinforce support for hundreds of thousands of jobs, including many in my home state of Kentucky. A significant bipartisan accomplishment.
“Now, standing in stark contrast to the Senate’s productive, bipartisan week is what the Democratic House of Representatives has chosen to prioritize. We’ve seen plenty of partisan theatrics and high drama for the television cameras. We’ve seen the majority spend plenty of time attacking the president and members of the administration. But virtually nothing in the way of bipartisan legislation to actually make progress for the American people.
“The problem seems to be that so many Democrats have moved so far to the extreme left that they literally could not pass commonsense legislation even if they wanted to. Case in point: The chronic difficulties and consternation that we’ve seen over in the House when it comes to the seemingly straightforward task of condemning anti-Semitism and efforts to delegitimize the Jewish State of Israel.
“Back in March, remember, House Democrats had their hands full dealing with one of their freshman members who had trotted out age-old anti-Semitic tropes. Dual loyalties, support for Israel being driven by money -- the kinds of language that you’d think the House could have condemned easily. But instead, after days of internal Democrat strife, all the House leadership could drum up was a watered-down resolution that sort of gestured vaguely at the problem. All the while, Senate-passed legislation that would actually do something about anti-Semitism has been languishing over there without a vote.
“For more than five months and counting, the House has refused to act on S. 1, the foreign policy legislation the Senate passed back in February. This bipartisan bill includes a provision to take on the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, an economic form of anti-Semitism that targets Israel. Here in the Senate, taking action against BDS was a bipartisan goal. I am a passionate opponent of the BDS movement. I know my friend the Democratic Leader opposes BDS as well. And S. 1 earned 77 votes in the Senate.
“But apparently it’s a bridge too far for this Democratic House. Even a milder resolution simply condemning BDS has become a lightning rod for the far left this very week. Reports indicate that ‘senior progressive Democrats are urging House leaders’ to walk away from the resolution condemning BDS. So the House won’t take action against it. And now it seems they can’t even merely condemn it. In fact, the far left wants to defend BDS.
“I guess this is where we are. Elected members of the Democratic Party are openly urging their leadership not to make them vote on condemning anti-Semitism. Because for some reason it is just too tough a vote. What a sad and bizarre situation we find in the House. I urge the distinguished Speaker of the House to do the right thing. Don’t let these far-left voices run the House. At long last, bring S. 1 up for a vote. The comprehensive legislation that sailed through the Senate with 77 votes — bring it up for a vote, Madame Speaker. Let them vote – I bet we’d see a pretty good outcome. And show anti-Semitism the door.”
Related Issues: Israel