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Rep. Weber Introduces Comprehensive Bipartisan Bill to Take Historic Action to Counter Antisemitism in the U.S.

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Representatives Randy Weber (TX-14), Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1), Chris Smith (NJ-4), and Kathy Manning (NC-6), along with Senators Jacky Rosen (NV) and James Lankford (OK), introduced the bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act to take historic action to counter antisemitism in the United States. While antisemitism has been on the rise in the U.S. for years, it has skyrocketed since the terrorist attack on Israel launched by Hamas on October 7, 2023. In the three months following the October 7 attack, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) found there had been a 360 percent increase in antisemitic attacks in the U.S. as compared to the same period the year before. This bipartisan legislation would take comprehensive action to strengthen efforts to combat antisemitism in America, including by establishing a first-ever National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism, who would oversee federal efforts to counter domestic antisemitism and lead an interagency task force to implement the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism and future government strategies.

“Over the past six months, we've witnessed an alarming surge in antisemitism to levels unseen in our nation's history, and it's utterly appalling,” said Congressman Weber. “As members of Congress, we cannot stand idly by and watch our Jewish community face relentless attacks on account of their faith. This reprehensible behavior has no place on American soil, and my colleagues and I refuse to tolerate it any longer. It's time for the federal government to ramp up its efforts to safeguard our Jewish friends, and this bipartisan legislation will serve as a crucial step in achieving that goal.”

“Antisemitism has been dramatically rising in the United States in the last several years and skyrocketed in the months since the horrific October 7 terror attack on Israel,” said Senator Rosen. “There have been countless disturbing stories of Jewish families accosted and assaulted on streets, Jewish businesses and places of worship vandalized and desecrated, and Jewish students threatened at colleges and universities. My bipartisan legislation would establish a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism for the first time ever, and take other much-needed steps across the federal government to fight anti-Jewish hatred, bigotry, and violence in the United States.”

“In America, we have the right to have a faith and to live that faith. No American should live in fear that they will be attacked simply because of their religious views,” said Senator Lankford. “As the number of acts of antisemitism continues to rise, Jewish communities across the US deserve action to protect this basic freedom. This bill will work to combat antisemitism by establishing roles to provide transparent oversight, address Holocaust denials and distortions, counter discrimination on college campuses, and designate May as Jewish American Heritage Month. Our Jewish friends and neighbors should not live in fear because of their faith and heritage and this bill affirms the right to live their faith freely.”

“Over the past decade, antisemitism has been on the rise in the United States. In the aftermath of the October 7th Hamas terrorist attack on Israel, American Jews are facing an explosion of antisemitic hatred and violence. This frightening development requires a comprehensive, all-of-government, approach. Our bipartisan, bicameral Countering Antisemitism Act will do just that,” said Congresswoman Manning. “This critically needed legislation will strengthen federal efforts to combat antisemitism and protect the Jewish community by codifying portions of the President’s first-ever National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism and establishing a National Coordinator in the White House to oversee an Interagency Task Force to Counter Antisemitism. This Act requires law enforcement to ensure robust threat assessment reporting, enhances education about the history of antisemitism and the dangers posed not just to Jews but to Democracy, requires an analysis of online antisemitism with recommendations to Congress, supports the Nonprofit Security Grant Program, and more.”

“The threat of antisemitic violent extremism has grown massively since Hamas’ atrocity spree on October 7, and the annual threat assessment from the FBI and other security agencies will focus attention on the dangers of antisemitic violence across the United States, including in my own congressional district,” said Congressman Chris Smith, who authored the law that created the international Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism. “The National Coordinator will oversee an Interagency Task Force to Counter Antisemitism—with a responsibility to report to Congress—and the bill strongly states that the federal government should apply the IHRA definition of antisemitism. Additionally, provisions on the Department of Education should help break through bottlenecks and roadblocks to countering antisemitic discrimination in higher education. I’ll work hard to pass this bill—and then to conduct oversight to ensure that it’s correctly and vigorously implemented by the Executive Branch.”

“Antisemitism has no place in our country,” said Congressman Fitzpatrick. “I am alarmed by the rising acts and incidences of antisemitism and hate across our nation. As a Co-Chair of the Bipartisan Taskforce for Combatting Antisemitism, I am proud to join this bipartisan and bicameral effort to make sure that our federal government is doing everything we can to protect our Jewish communities.”

“As ADL data shows, the U.S. Jewish community is facing the worst crisis of antisemitism that we have seen in a generation,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of ADL. “We applaud the Countering Antisemitism Act and its efforts to implement and make permanent the National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism.  The U.S. government must pursue policies and create the necessary infrastructure to fight antisemitism today and well into the future; these efforts must endure beyond any single Administration or 12-month timeline. Thank you, Senators Jacky Rosen and James Lankford and Representatives Kathy Manning and Chris Smith, Co-Chairs of the House and Senate Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, for leading this critical, timely bipartisan initiative. This historic bill is the most far-reaching antisemitism initiative ever to be introduced in Congress. As we face such historic levels of antisemitism, the Countering Antisemitism Act offers a smart, innovative whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach to combating this hatred and protecting Jews around the country.”

“The surge of antisemitism in the U.S. is an urgent threat to Jews and to all Americans, a threat which has only grown more severe since Hamas’ October 7 attacks on Israel,” said Ted Deutch, CEO of the American Jewish Committee. “American Jewish Committee’s (AJC) State of Antisemitism in America 2023 Report found that 63% of American Jews feel the status of Jews is less secure than one year ago — more than a 20 percentage point increase in just one year. One in four reported they were the target of an antisemitic incident—a physical attack, remark, vandalism or messaging—in 2023, and 46% reported changing their behavior out of fear of antisemitism in the past 12 months. As the one-year anniversary of the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism draws near, we applaud the co-chairs of the House and Senate Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and James Lankford (R-OK), and Representatives Kathy Manning (D-NC) and Chris Smith (R-NJ), for coming together on a bipartisan basis to introduce comprehensive legislation urgently needed to counter domestic antisemitism and protect Jewish communities across our country. We are grateful to these congressional champions for taking decisive action to fight anti-Jewish hate and preserve our democracy.”

“We applaud the bipartisan and bicameral introduction of the Countering Antisemitism Act, which is the largest legislative package ever considered to combat antisemitism,” said William C. Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. “This Act, sponsored by co-chairs of the Senate and House Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, contains critical provisions that will strengthen federal efforts and capacity to fight antisemitism, including by establishing the position of a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism to chair an interagency task force. Given the unprecedented surge of antisemitism in the U.S. following the October 7th terrorist attacks on Israel, this legislation is a significant step in protecting American Jewry and combating the oldest of hatreds.”

“This bill contains important provisions that will support our Jewish Federation communities across the country as we work together daily and tirelessly to combat the tsunami of antisemitism we face. We are proud to support its passage,” said Julie Platt, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Federations of North America.

The bipartisan and bicameral Countering Antisemitism Act would:

  • Establish within the White House a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism to: 
    • Serve as the President’s principal advisor on countering domestic antisemitism. 
    • Coordinate Federal efforts to counter antisemitism. 
    • Chair a new interagency task force to coordinate the implementation of U.S. government strategies to counter antisemitism.  
    • Conduct an annual analysis of the spread of antisemitism online and provide recommendations to Congress on how to counter it.  
    • Direct federal agencies to submit a report to Congress detailing their implementation of the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism.
  • Require the FBI, Department of Homeland Security, and National Counterterrorism Center to jointly produce an annual threat assessment of antisemitic violent extremism. 
  • Require the Department of Education to designate a senior official to advise the Secretary on the Department’s efforts to counter antisemitic discrimination in higher education. 
  • Require the FEMA Administrator to ensure the agency has sufficient resources and personnel needed to carry out the Nonprofit Security Grant Program. 
  • Formally establish May as “Jewish American Heritage Month” in federal law.
Representatives Weber, Manning, Smith, Fitzpatrick, and Senators Rosen and Lankford and serve as co-chairs of the Senate and House Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, respectively. The Task Forces were instrumental in pushing for the first-ever U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism