ZOA Applauds Sen. Rick Scott on Leading Resolution to Label Attacks Against Israel as Antisemitism
June 18, 2023

Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) President Morton A. Klein and Government Relations Director Dan Pollak released the following statement:

The ZOA strongly commends Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) and his co-sponsors for standing strong on the principle that the only valid definition of antisemitism is the widely accepted International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism. The Resolution is also sponsored by Senators Eric Schmitt (R-MO), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Bill Hagerty (R-TN) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN). The resolution text can be found here.

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said:

“The Biden administration and State Dept. antisemitism envoy Deborah Lipstadt has claimed that their new antisemitism strategy, endorsed by antisemitic Israel-bashers CAIR and J street, embraces the IHRA definition, as if that’s the only definition supported by Biden, but in fact the strategy states that President Biden ‘welcomes and appreciates as a valuable tool’ the dangerous ‘Nexus’ definition of antisemitism. The Biden Strategy then also ‘notes’ other even worse definitions, which can mean even more harmful definitions such as the so-called ‘Jerusalem definition.’ These definitions were concocted with the intent of shielding Jew-Haters from ever being held to account for their antisemitism. The wonderful thing about the Senate Resolution is it explicitly states that the government at all levels should ‘exclusively utilize the IHRA working definition of antisemitism.’

“ZOA has always fought against antisemitism from all parts of the political spectrum, and the IHRA working definition should be an important part of the consensus around defeating Jew-hatred. Singling out Israel for special, usually false criticism when other countries’ serious human rights abuses are ignored, is antisemitism. Opposing Israel’s existence as a Jewish country is antisemitism. Supporting BDS is antisemitism. Proclaiming victory when the administration muddies the waters on this exact point is counterproductive and delusional. This resolution should be supported by Senators from both parties precisely to correct the mistakes made in the administration’s dangerous Antisemitism Strategy.”

ZOA Director of Government Relations Daniel Pollak said:

“The leadership displayed by Senator Rick Scott and the other sponsors is exactly what is needed to stand up for the Jewish People at this moment of unprecedented and rising antisemitism in the United States. The only thing missing in this Resolution so far are Democratic co-sponsors, and ZOA will be working hard to get the many Democratic Senators who should agree with this Resolution to support it. It is hard to understand how standing up for the IHRA definition should in any way be a partisan political stance.”

Senator Rick Scott said,

“It sickens me that our Jewish communities have faced growing threats in recent years, fueled by dangerous and hateful rhetoric. In Florida and across America, we must continue to stand with the Jewish community and fight against antisemitism anywhere it is found – and this resolution makes clear that ANY attacks or hateful rhetoric about the Jewish people or country of Israel is labeled what it is: antisemitism. […] Condemning antisemitism and these hateful attacks should not be a partisan or a political issue, and I urge my colleagues to pass this resolution quickly.”

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