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Katy Grimes

CA Democratic Jewish Caucus Stall, then Hijacks Bill Opposing Israel Boycott

The bill opposing boycotts of Israel has been pigeonholed in California’s Democratically controlled state legislature for nearly three months. AB 1552, by Assemblyman Travis Allen, R-Huntington Beach, prohibits state entities from contracting with parties that engage in commercial discrimination, and boycotts on the basis of national origin.

The international “Boycott, Divest and Sanctions” movement is a growing authoritarian movement created and funded by a global alliance of the Regressive-Left and Islamists, which calls for a political, academic and economic boycott of Israel. And on college campuses, the goal of BDS is to silence dissent.

Rather than allowing Allen’s bill to progress through the Constitutional legislative committee process, the California Jewish Caucus first watered it down through amendments, then hijacked it, and introduced a nearly identical bill by Assemblyman Richard Bloom, a Democrat from Santa Monica.

“Any effort to weaken AB 1552, is an effort to weaken California’s stand for Israel,” Allen said.

It is disturbing that Democrats are not giving this Republican bill the right to a fair hearing.

I wrote March 27:

“Allen got hornswoggled by a few Shmendriks in the California Legislature’s Jewish Caucus. After Assemblyman Allen announced his legislation, members of the Jewish Caucus weren’t happy with his Chutzpah for doing it without consulting them first. It was an odd reaction, because the Jewish Caucus did not have any anti-BDS legislation in the pipeline, and I’m told, had no plans for any such legislation.”

The Jewish Caucus proposed amendments to Allen’s bill. Assemblyman Allen accepted all of the amendments, and tried to get the bill moved on to legislative committees for hearings. But the Jewish Caucus sat on it, and AB 1552 has been stalled and stuck in the Rules Committee since January. Then the Jewish Caucus gutted and amended another bill, hijacking the language of Assemblyman Allen’s.

So, why would the California Legislative Jewish Caucus work so hard to kill a bill aimed at promoting peace and ending the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divest, and Sanctions movement – especially knowing the BDS movement denies the right of the Jewish State to exist, regularly employing tactics designed to harm Israel?

They sure were quick with a press conference and “decried a swastika display in Sacramento’s River Park neighborhood as offensive and an insult to victims of the holocaust and veterans who fought the Nazis during World War II,” and “urged the immediate removal of the display” in February 2015.

Some say extremist American Jews help Israel’s enemies.

BDS Facebook page

I’ve talked with Jewish scholars who say the BDS movement is an outcome of the New Left’s dominance in American academia, especially Middle East Studies.  And in California, considered ground-zero for BDS anti-Semitism, state universities have the most episodes of anti-Semitism on American campuses. Some of the same college groups supporting a boycott of Israel, refused to boycott ISIS.

“Many academic associations are moving ahead with efforts to impose full economic and academic boycotts of Israel, including barring their colleagues (who may not share their alacrity for anti-Zionism) from collaborating with Israeli scholars,” A.J. Caschetta wrote at the American Thinker recently. Caschetta is a Shillman-Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum and a senior lecturer at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

“Like the far-Leftists who failed to recognize the evils of the Soviet Union, many Americans today—including some of its most influential editors—can’t see what’s wrong with anti-Israel activism,” explained Howard Wohl, President of the Brooklyn College Hillel, in Why Liberals Must Repudiate the BDS Movement.

The mission of the California Legislative Jewish Caucus is to:

  1. Be a Jewish voice for justice, equality, and progress.
  2. Promote the, educational, social, legislative, professional and cultural interests of its members.
  3. Serve as a resource to, and advocate on behalf of, the professional, educational, social, political and cultural concerns of the Jewish Community.
  4. Develop and advance programs and policies that further the interests of the Jewish Caucus.

So while the Senate Rules Committee sits on Assemblyman Allen’s bill at the request of the Jewish Caucus, obstructive politics as usual continue in the California Legislature, while they simultaneously pushing the boundaries of the legal rules… only this time, it also appears to be anti-Semitic, given cover by the Jewish Caucus.

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