Amid Rising Antisemitism, Jewish Community Leaders Praise Comprehensive Rosen Bipartisan Bill to Counter Antisemitism in the U.S.

Senator Rosen Introduced Bipartisan Legislation To Establish First-Ever National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism, Tasked With Overseeing New Interagency Task Force

WASHINGTON, DC – Amid rising antisemitism in the United States, including on college and university campuses, Jewish community leaders are praising U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen’s (D-NV) bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act, which she introduced with Senator James Lankford (R-OK), along with Representatives Kathy Manning (D-NC-6), Chris Smith (R-NJ-4), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-1), and Randy Weber (R-TX-14). While antisemitism has been on the rise in the U.S. for years, it has skyrocketed since the terrorist attack on Israel launched by Hamas on October 7, 2023. In the months following the October 7th attack, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) found there had been a 360 percent increase in antisemitic attacks in the U.S. as compared to the same period the year before. 

This bipartisan legislation would take comprehensive action to strengthen efforts to combat antisemitism in America, including by establishing a first-ever National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism, who would oversee federal efforts to counter domestic antisemitism and lead an interagency task force to implement the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism and future government strategies.

The Countering Antisemitism Act has been endorsed by the following organizations: Agudath Israel of America, American Israel Public Affairs Committee, American Jewish Committee, American Jewish Congress, Anti-Defamation League, B’nai B’rith International, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Hadassah, Hillel International, Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy, Israeli-American Civic Action Network, JCC Association of North America, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Jewish Federations of North America, Jewish on Campus, National Council of Jewish Women, National Coalition Supporting Eurasian Jewry, Nexus Leadership Project, Secure Community Network, The Rabbinical Assembly, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, Union for Reform Judaism, United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, and World Jewish Congress.

“Rising antisemitism across the United States, including the vile displays of antisemitism on college campuses, calls for a whole-of-government approach,” said Senator Rosen. “I’m glad that my bipartisan legislation, which would establish a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism for the first time ever, is receiving overwhelming support from across the ideological spectrum in the Jewish community. I’ll continue working to get this critical legislation passed to ensure the federal government is equipped to fight anti-Jewish hate in the United States.”

Rabbi Abba Cohen, Vice President for Government Affairs & Washington Director, Agudath Israel of America: “The Countering Antisemitism Act is a meaningful step forward in the nation’s effort to combat the scourge of antisemitism. It introduces a comprehensive, multi-pronged approach – including appointment of a White House-based national coordinator who would oversee federal efforts to fight antisemitism and lead an interagency task force dedicated to this cause. Its reach extends to Holocaust education, campus antisemitism, nonprofit security grants, and more. The result will be the creation of a permanent, unified structure clamping down on antisemitism and covering the broad landscape of both government and society.” 

Daniel Rosen, President, American Jewish Congress: “The American Jewish Congress applauds the announcement of the ‘Countering Antisemitism Act’ and offers its full-throated support for this critical, bipartisan legislation. We are at a time when no action is too small to respond to the dramatic manifestations of antisemitic hate that we are witnessing throughout the country, especially in the aftermath of the October 7 terror attack in Israel by Hamas. These manifestations range from antisemitism and Holocaust denial on social media platforms to the antisemitic incidents that are proliferating on the streets of our cities, as well as on our schools and university campuses. Thankfully, this legislation is no small feat and is not merely a sporadic response; it is a deeply comprehensive initiative that seeks to offer a holistic approach to improving and elevating the fight against antisemitism.

Last year, the American Jewish Congress enthusiastically welcomed the first-ever National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism, announced by the Biden Administration. Now, this legislation seeks to build on that strategy and lays the pathway to better governmental coordination and implementation in the efforts to combat anti-Jewish hatred and actions. We are grateful to Senators Jacky Rosen and James Lankford, and Representatives Kathy Manning and Chris Smith, Co-Chairs of the Senate and House Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, for stepping up and for their leadership. We urge Congressional Leaders and all Members of Congress to endorse this important legislation in support of the Jewish community and to ensure that it reaches President Biden’s desk as soon as possible.” 

Rabbi Eric Fusfield, Director of Legislative Affairs, B’nai B’rith International:“We applaud Senators Rosen and Lankford and Representatives Manning and Smith for leading this crucial bipartisan, bicameral initiative to combat antisemitism. The dramatic escalation of antisemitism in the United States since October 7 necessitates a firm response from our nation’s leaders. The time has come to establish a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism, an Interagency Task Force, and a senior official at the Department of Education to focus the administration’s efforts to confront the rise in Jew-hatred wherever it occurs. Whether by ordering assessments of violent extremism and online antisemitism or by bolstering Holocaust education, nonprofit security grants, and Jewish American Heritage Month, this legislation will make a much-needed difference in fighting hatred and promoting Jewish security.”

Adam Lehman, President and CEO of Hillel International: “As college campuses across the country are experiencing record levels of antisemitism, the Countering Antisemitism Act is an important step toward changes that can ensure a safer, more inclusive, and supportive environment for Jewish students at our colleges and universities. At Hillel International, we are working tirelessly across hundreds of campuses to support Jewish students encountering antisemitism, and to provide university administrators the education, resources, and practical solutions they need to fix their broken campus cultures. We applaud the recognition by Congress that more can and must be done in these efforts, and their leadership in taking action toward that end.”

Micky Shulman, Nevada Chair, Israeli-American Civic Action Network (ICAN): “ICAN proudly supports the Countering Antisemitism Act, introduced by Senators Rosen and Lankford, as it directly addresses the urgent need for an integrated approach to counter antisemitism. By establishing a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism and a dedicated interagency task force, this bill pioneers a comprehensive strategy that reinforces America’s defenses against antisemitic violence and discrimination targeting Jewish and Israeli-Americans.”

Dr. Charles Asher Small, Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy (ISGAP): “ISGAP expresses its sincerest gratitude for the new bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act spearheaded by Sen. Rosen alongside Sen. Lankford and Reps. Manning, Smith, Fitzpatrick and Weber, co-chairs of the Senate and House Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism. A turning point has been reached in the catastrophic spike in antisemitic attacks in the US following October 7. These incidences can no longer be ignored and this legislation undoubtedly takes the most comprehensive approach to date. ISGAP has been fully immersed in the research and reporting of this unprecedented antisemitism seen on our campuses and in our communities in the hopes of bringing this to the forefront of Congress’s attention through meaningful action. We urge Congress to swiftly take up and enact these important measures. Jewish students, businesses, and places of worship deserve to feel safe. ISGAP greatly appreciates the diligent work of these task forces and looks forward to working with the Administration as this initiative is implemented,” 

Jennifer Mamlet, Acting President and CEO, JCC Association of North America: “JCC Association of North America proudly endorses the Countering Antisemitism Act on behalf of the 170+ Jewish Community Centers and Camps across North America who collectively welcome 1.5 million through our doors every single week. The alarming rise in antisemitism is a threat to all who seek to maintain open and welcoming spaces for the Jewish community and our allies; and we applaud this comprehensive effort to combat Jew-hatred and protect our communities.” 

Amy Spitalnick, CEO, Jewish Council for Public Affairs: “At a moment when antisemitism is being normalized in new and dangerous ways, comprehensive implementation of the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism is more important than ever – and the Countering Antisemitism Act plays a critical role in moving it forward.

“Like the national strategy, this bill fundamentally recognizes that Jewish safety is inextricably linked to the safety of other communities and the health and vibrancy of our democracy. From deadly antisemitic conspiracy theories, to cynical efforts to isolate Jews from the very coalitions we need to advance inclusive societies, antisemitism is a multifaceted threat that undermines each and every American’s safety and our core democratic norms and values.

“We appreciate the leadership of Sen. Jacky Rosen, Sen. James Lankford, Rep. Kathy Manning, Rep. Chris Smith, Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, and Rep. Randy Weber in introducing this key bill, and we continue to appreciate the Biden administration’s ardent commitment to these efforts. JCPA will be mobilizing in the days and weeks ahead to support this legislation and the broader fight to counter hate and bigotry and protect our democracy.”

Julia Jassey, CEO, Jewish on Campus: “Jewish students know uniquely well the severity of the antisemitism crisis in our country in 2024. The Countering Antisemitism Act sends a critical message and provides essential resources that will make a difference for Jewish Americans, including on campus.” 

Mark Levin, CEO, National Coalition Supporting Eurasian Jewry: “With antisemitism in the United States at unprecedented levels, we applaud Senators Rosen and Lankford for introducing legislation establishing an office in the White House to coordinate the activities of the Federal government to counter this increase. It is critical that the FBI, DHS, and National Counterterrorism Center also annually assess the threat of antisemitic violent extremism.” 

Sheila Katz, CEO, National Council of Jewish Women: “Right now, nowhere in the United States feels safe for Jewish people. Antisemitic hate threatens us in schools and at universities, at our synagogues, at work, and in our neighborhoods. We must not allow this to become the status quo. The Countering Antisemitism Act is a critical, bipartisan step forward toward implementation of the White House’s historic National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism. We are grateful to Senators Rosen and Lankford and Representatives Manning and Smith for their leadership and urge Congress to pass this bill to keep communities safe from antisemitism.” 

Michael G. Masters, National Director & CEO, Secure Community Network: “We are experiencing the most dynamic and complex threat environment to ever confront the Jewish community, or our country. This has only become more apparent since October 7th, with a surge of threats, assaults, and acts of violence directed at members of the Jewish community — just for being Jewish. It has been close to a year since the release of the U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism; the co-chairs of the House and Senate Bipartisan Task Forces for Combating Antisemitism, Senators Rosen and Lankford and Representatives Manning and Smith, have been instrumental in its development and strong advocates for its implementation — and have been incredible supporters of the Jewish community for years prior. We are grateful for their bipartisan, bicameral effort to build off this strategy to counter domestic antisemitism and protect Jewish communities across our country through their proposed Countering Antisemitism Act. Most notably, the proposal would strengthen Federal government efforts by ensuring more robust research, analysis, and data on the current threat picture and increasing Federal support for the Department of Homeland Security’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP). We are thankful for their continued leadership, partnership, and dedication to representing and supporting the Jewish community and stand ready to assist this effort in any way we can.” 

Nathan Diament, Executive Director of Public Policy, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America: “The bipartisan Countering Antisemitism Act is a critical proposal at a critical time. Antisemitism has reached unprecedented levels in America, and there is more we need the Federal government to do to rollback this tide of hate. The CAA will marshall more federal resources, energy and focus on this fight. The Orthodox Jewish community is very grateful to Senators Rosen and Lankford and Reps. Manning and Smith for their leadership on this legislation.” 

Rabbi Jonah Dov Pesner, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, Union for Reform Judaism: “The Countering Antisemitism Act is an important step forward in the fight against hate. Amidst rising antisemitism, we stand together to build a safer, more inclusive society for all.”

Rabbi Jacob Blumenthal, CEO, United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism and Rabbinical Assembly: “Along with all forms of hatred and racism, the documented and unprecedented growth of antisemitism in the United States is a threat not only to the American Jewish community but to the cohesiveness of our society and the strength of our democracy. This bill will help ensure our government has the information and tools it needs to fight this scourge, to protect the Jewish community, and to encourage proactive measures like education that will create a more just society for all.” 

Carol Ann Schwartz, National President, Hadassah: The Women’s Zionist Organization of America: “To effectively fight antisemitism we need a whole-of-government and a whole-of-society approach. Hadassah is proud to support the Countering Antisemitism Act, which builds on the country’s first-ever National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism. We thank Senators Rosen and Lankford and Representatives Manning and Smith for their bipartisan leadership and urge Congress to ensure that Americans continue to come together to fight hatred by passing this bill quickly.”

Ronald S. Lauder, President, World Jewish Congress: “The legislation introduced today is a critical step toward addressing antisemitism in the United States and around the world. American leadership is essential in this fight, and I’m grateful for the bipartisanship that has led to this important moment. The waves of hate that Jews have faced since October 7th is something I never thought I would see in my lifetime. This meaningful bill will reinforce those battling against this devastating form of hatred. The establishment of a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism will be essential in bridging any gaps and ensure that the administration can transform words into action. I look forward to seeing the positive impact this will have on combating antisemitism and fostering a culture of tolerance and understanding during this difficult time.”