New Congressional Bill Supports States Fighting Anti-Israel Boycotts
Lawmakers in both chambers of Congress are slated to introduce bipartisan legislation boosting efforts at the state and local levels to combat economic warfare against Israel, according to versions of the bills obtained exclusively by Tablet.
The bipartisan bills—sponsored by Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) in the Senate, and Juan Vargas (D-CA) and Bob Dold (R-IL) in the House—are slated to be introduced on Wednesday under the title “Combating BDS Act of 2016.” Among other things, they protect state and local governments’ right to disassociate pensions and contracts from entities that boycott, divest from, or sanction Israel.
This legislative move comes after a string of local victories against BDS. Last June, South Carolina passed a law prohibiting public entities in the state from signing contracts with business that boycott Israel. A little over a month later, Illinois passeda different law, requiring state pensions to terminate investment in companies that adhere to the BDS agenda.
An activist involved in state-by-state efforts to combat anti-Israel boycotts said he expects states pursuing measures modeled on the South Carolina and Illinois laws to reach double digits by summer. Similar bills have already been introduced in Ohio and California, with momentum in New York, Florida, and Pennsylvania, as well...