January 8, 2019
News Press Release

ZOA Applauds Newest Bill Supporting Israel & Protecting US Interests

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) strongly applauds the fact that the first Senate bill of the 116th Congress, the “Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act of 2019” (S.1) is legislation supporting Israel and US-Israel relations. It was introduced yesterday by Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), James Risch (R-ID), Cory Gardner (R-CO), and Mitch McConnell (R-KY).

The most important of the four pieces may well be to authorize state or local governments to adopt and enforce measures against entities engaged in commerce- or investment-related BDS activity.

ZOA Director of Government Relations Daniel Pollak, ZOA president Morton Klein and ZOA Chair Mark Levenson stated: 

“It is a tribute to the importance of the relationship with Israel that the first Senate bill of the year will be legislation concerning the Middle East and supporting America’s greatest ally, the Jewish State of Israel. There were four bills that were in various stages of completion as the year ended, and the Majority Leader of the Senate has brought them together for expedited consideration in the new Congress. ZOA applauds this newest bill supporting Israel, fighting anti-Semitism and bigotry, and protecting US interests.

“We strongly thank and praise Senators Rubio, Risch, Gardner and McConnell for moving so quickly to address this important unfinished business from the previous Congress. We hope that the bill will be quickly passed by the full Senate and that the House will pass the same legislation soon.

The most important of the four pieces may well be to authorize state or local governments to adopt and enforce measures against entities engaged in commerce- or investment-related BDS activity. Other pieces of the “Strengthening America’s Security in the Middle East Act of 2019” would codify the 10-year Memorandum of Understanding on US military assistance to Israel, extend war reserve stockpile authority and authorize the transfer of defense articles to Israel in time of need; reauthorize US defense cooperation with Jordan; and impose new sanctions on entities providing financing to the Syrian government while protecting humanitarian efforts to help Syrian civilians.”