House Passes Chris Smith’s Bill To Combat Anti-Semitism

Sep 14th, 2018 | By | Category: Featured
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Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ).

Legislation authored by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) that provides critical support for the U.S. in the fight against anti-Semitism passed the House on Thursday.

“Mr. Speaker, today we are witnessing a chilling revival of anti-Semitic sentiment in many corners of the world,” said Smith, a co-chair of the Bipartisan Congressional Task Force against Anti-Semitism, in his remarks on the House Floor on HR 1911, the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act. “In light of this, there is an urgent need for a comprehensive United States government approach to combating anti-Semitism, led by a strong, senior official.”

Smith’s legislation, HR 1911, upgrades the position of Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism at the State Department. Smith authored the original provisions of the Global Anti-Semitism Review Act of 2004 that created the position and office of the Special Envoy.

“By passing H.R. 1911 today, Congress is speaking with a loud clear bipartisan voice on the importance of this position and the message it sends to the world,” Smith said.

Under HR 1911, the Special Envoy position:

  • Would be elevated to the rank of Ambassador at the State Department and report directly to the Secretary of State
  • Would be the primary advisor to the U.S. government in monitoring and combating anti-Semitism
  • Would not be saddled with extraneous duties irrelevant to combating anti-Semitism
  • Must be filled (if vacant) through a nomination by the President within 90 days of HR 1911 becoming law

Smith was joined by other co-chairs of the Bipartisan Congressional Task Force for Combating Anti-Semitism who cosponsored HR 1911: Reps. Nita Lowey (D-NY), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Kay Granger (R-TX), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Peter Roskam (R-IL), and Marc Veasey (D-TX).

To read excerpts of Rep. Smith’s remarks on the House Floor on HR 1911, click here.

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