Watch the Senators’ Launch Here.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, at the American Jewish Committee (AJC)’s Virtual Global Forum, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), along with Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Cory Booker (D-NJ), launched the Senate Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations. The bipartisan caucus, the first-of-its-kind collaboration in the United States Senate, will bring together elected leaders from the Black and Jewish communities, and both sides of the aisle, to strengthen Black-Jewish relations, bolster mutual understanding, and work to combat antisemitism and racism.
“In the 20th century, Black Americans and Jewish Americans helped usher in the birth of the civil rights movement, and banded together to take a stand against bigotry and hate,” said Senator Rosen. “Today, Black and Jewish Americans, including Jews of color, are frequently targeted for racial and religiously motivated hate crimes. Racism and antisemitism threaten the safety of our communities and the very foundation of our democracy. This new, bipartisan caucus is an opportunity for Black Americans, Jewish Americans, and Jews of color to come together and build bridges that connect us, shine a light on our common challenges, and form a coalition where we advocate for one another, helping to lift up these communities.”
“Black and Jewish Americans share a uniquely parallel journey of pain that we have both faced throughout history,” said Senator Scott. “That is why I am so blessed to stand alongside my colleagues Senators Rosen and Booker in creating this important caucus, as we work to put action behind our words. No matter our race, backgrounds, or political beliefs—if we come together as Americans—I am confident we can create a better, safer future for all.”
“The African-American and Jewish communities have historically shared common struggles, and from those struggles, we have formed an undeniable bond,” said Senator Booker. “Our two communities have a long history of working together and standing against hate and bigotry. I am proud to join Senator Rosen and Senator Scott in launching the Senate Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations to strengthen the ties of our communities and work towards our common goals of promoting civil rights, standing up against hate, and building a more just and caring world.”
“As one of the founding members of the House Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations, I’m excited by my Senate colleagues, who have moved forward to launch such a caucus in the Senate,” said Representative Brenda Lawrence. “Racism and antisemitism are not just Black or Jewish issues, or Democratic or Republican issues, they are forms of deep-seated hate that can only be overcome together. These two caucuses, comprised of Republicans and Democrats, Black members, Jewish members, and allies, are a reflection and testament to the caucuses’ ideas.”
“I’m thrilled that senators of both parties are stepping up to make the Congressional Black-Jewish Caucus bicameral,” said Representative Lee Zeldin. “I look forward to being a part of the caucus’ continued efforts to bring the Black and Jewish communities together to overcome serious challenges and achieve significant, shared goals.”
“Two years ago Congresswoman Lawrence, Congressman Hurd, Congressman Zeldin, and the late-Congressman John Lewis, and I established the Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations. We all shared a commitment and took pride in the history of our communities fighting hatred, injustice, and inequality together,” said Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz. “Today, this work is more important than ever before. So, I am honored to welcome my Senate colleagues who are forming a Senate Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations. I look forward to working alongside Senator Rosen, Senator Booker, and Senator Scott in a bicameral effort.”
“In 2019, AJC launched the House Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations from our Global Forum Stage,” said David Harris, CEO of the American Jewish Committee. “Now, it is our great honor to launch this Senate Caucus from our virtual stage. The timing couldn’t be more critical. We must confront and combat antisemitism and racism. Working together, we are immeasurably stronger, as history has proven from the decades-long partnership between the Black and Jewish communities.”
BACKGROUND: The bipartisan Senate Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations will:
- Raise awareness of each community’s challenges and needs, in Congress and around the country;
- Work to eradicate antisemitism, racism, and bigotry in the United States through legislation, education, and meaningful dialogue on and off Capitol Hill; and
- Provide resources to members of Congress to empower them to bring African American and Jewish communities together.
The Caucus will serve as a corollary to the U.S. House of Representatives’ Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations. The bipartisan House caucus is led by Representatives Brenda Lawerence (D-MI), Lee Zeldin (R-NY), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL).
Each of the founding co-chairs is committed to this mission and is confident that our nation will be stronger when we know each other, trust each other, and work together. In Nevada, South Carolina, and New Jersey–we will start this process. Each founding co-chair will begin meaningful, substantive conversations bringing together Black and Jewish leaders.