38% Increase in Anti-Israel Programs & 21% increase in BDS Movements in ‘14-‘15 Require Attention to Prevent Anti-Semitic Harassment and Intimidation
Washington, DC—Members of the House of Representatives Bipartisan Taskforce for Combating Anti-Semitism sounded the alarm about a troubling surge in anti-Semitism on American college campuses. In a letter to the Secretary of Education, the Taskforce asked the Secretary about the Department’s planned response to the issue. Additionally, the co-chairs made the following statement:
“An alarming rise of anti-Israel programs on American college campuses contribute to increasing harassment, intimidation, and discrimination against Jewish students. While we believe that students’ freedoms of speech and assembly should be respected, there are increasing reports that activity advertised as anti-Israel or anti-Zionist is devolving into displays of subtle, but sometimes outright anti-Semitism. Attacks on students because of their actual or perceived religion, ancestry, or ethnicity are unacceptable. We believe strongly that no student should ever face discrimination and that school activities must be structured in a respectful manner to ensure academic integrity and a nondiscriminatory environment throughout the entire campus. For these reasons, we ask the Department of Education to assess its ability to monitor and respond to anti-Semitic incidents and to take additional steps to combat intimidation and harassment against minority students on college campuses.”
The Bipartisan Taskforce for Combating Anti-Semitism is co-chaired by U.S. Reps. Nita Lowey (D-NY), Chris Smith (R-NJ), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Kay Granger (R-TX), Steve Israel (D-NY), Peter Roskam (R-IL), and Ted Deutch (D-FL).
In 2004, the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) clarified its interpretation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, including protections for groups of students on the basis of their actual or perceived shared ancestry or ethnic characteristics, regardless of whether they are members of a faith community, as in the case for Jewish, Sikh, and Muslim students. The Department reiterated this policy again in 2010 and 2015.
However, as the number of reported Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement campaigns and other anti-Israel initiatives rise on college campuses, Members of Congress believe the Department must proactively implement its anti-discrimination policy to mitigate anti-Semitism on college campuses.
The following organizations expressed their support for the letter: the Anti-Defamation League, Jewish Federation of North America, B’nai Brith International, Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, the World Jewish Congress, and the Zionist Organization of America.
Text of the letter can be found here.Read More
WASHINGTON – 394 members of the U.S. House of Representatives signed a letter urging President Obama to veto possible upcoming one-sided initiatives in the United Nations concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The letter was precipitated by reports that one-sided initiatives – which dangerously hinder the prospects for resuming direct negotiations – may arise at the United Nations in the coming months concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The letter is an unambiguous statement that the view of the U.S. House of Representatives is that only at the negotiating table – and not at the UN – can the parties resolve their complicated differences.
The letter was led by:
Full letter is attached.
Our community has a special relationship with the military and those who serve. I want to provide you an update on the USS Fort Worth.
The U.S. Navy’s fleet of Littoral Combat Ships (LCS), which includes the USS Fort Worth (LCS-3), is vitally important to our national security. Designed to be quick, agile and able to operate in depths as shallow as 20 feet, these ships are perfectly suited to operate in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Fort Worth is currently on a 16-month deployment that has seen her on the front lines in the South China Sea. With an assertive China claiming waters and constructing islands, tensions are high. The Fort Worth has done a great job on deployment, protecting freedom of navigation and reassuring our regional allies.
Unfortunately, during a maintenance period while in port in Singapore, there was significant damage done to the ship’s engine. The damage is extensive enough that the ship will sail back to her home port of San Diego in order to be fully repaired. Once repaired, the Fort Worth can redeploy and continue supporting the missions vital to our national security around the world.
We are so proud of her and her sailors. The Fort Worth is an incredible ship, but she is nothing without the men and women who serve onboard. Their “Grit and Tenacity,” which is the motto of the Fort Worth, inspire all of us in the 12th District, across the United States and our allies and partners worldwide.
Kay Granger Member of CongressRead More
Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers, along with State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee Chairwoman Kay Granger and Labor, Health and Human Services Subcommittee Chairman Tom Cole responded today to the Administration’s announcement that federal agencies will use existing funding for efforts to address the Zika epidemic. In February, the Chairs called on the Administration to tap into these existing funds to provide the quickest and most efficient response to the Zika outbreak.
The statement follows:
“Recent outbreaks – including the devastating Ebola virus – have highlighted the necessity of a rapid, direct, and strategic response to global health crises. It is clear that Zika poses a real threat to public health, and the United States must respond quickly to address the current situation and be prepared for the potential spread of this disease within our borders.
“That is why more than a month ago we called on the Administration to use existing funding and legal authorities to provide the most immediate and effective response to the Zika outbreak. We are pleased to hear today that federal agencies are heeding our call. These resources – which the agencies already have on hand – will help stop the growth of this devastating disease around the world, and prepare for and protect against outbreaks within our borders.
“We will look carefully at the details of today’s proposal by the Administration to ensure the best and most effective use of these funds, and to provide proper oversight. As we move forward, the Appropriations Committee will continue to monitor the changing needs resulting from this unpredictable crisis to assure the resources necessary for the response are available.”Read More
SAN DIEGO – Congresswoman Kay Granger (Rep) for Texas’ 12th congressional district, along with three congressional delegation staff members toured the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) and met with Sailors from the Texas area March 30.
On her first visit to an amphibious ship, Capt. Michael W. Baze, the ship’s commanding officer, guided Granger, on a tour of the ship’s hangar bay, flight deck, mess decks, medical facilities and brief her about the ship’s capabilities.
As the first woman to ever serve on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, Granger was very impressed with the Navy’s newest amphibious-class assault ship.
“Oh, it’s wonderful,” said Granger. “This is exactly what we wanted it (the ship) to be.”
Granger also got the chance to sit down with some of the Sailors from Texas for lunch and conversation. Chief Boatswain’s Mate Christopher Tunal, a Midland, Texas native, was very appreciative that she took time out of her schedule to meet with Sailors.
“She was really nice and very, very interested in the ship,” said Tunal. “ She asked about the various things that I am in charge of, stated that she is very supportive what we do, and if there is anything she can do to help, not hesitate to contact her.”
Granger was thoroughly impressed with the personnel on board and the spirit that they displayed throughout her visit.
“The Sailors I’ve met here are the best in the world,” said Granger. “What great attitudes. That is what I’ve been so impressed with. They have such optimism and really like what they’re doing … no, they love what they’re doing. That makes all the difference in the world.”
USS America is the first in her class of aviation-centric amphibious assault ships the Navy is unveiling. America provides forward presence and power projection as an integral part of Joint Interagency and Multinational Maritime Expeditionary Forces.Read More
Congresswoman Kay Granger made the following statement in response to the attacks in Brussels:
The terrorist attacks on the Brussels airport and metro are a reminder that we must remain vigilant against the radicals supported by the Islamic State, who have declared war on innocent people in Europe and around the world.
The reports that Americans were injured in the attacks emphasize that we will not be safe until we eradicate ISIS.
This is a stark warning that we must attack ISIS where it is based if we are to win this war against extremists. The House voted unanimously to declare that ISIS is committing genocide, and that declaration was made official by the State Department.
Congress must provide our military and intelligence agencies with funding and equipment necessary to protect our national security abroad, where these threats develop. I will support robust funding for our national defense, and for the programs overseen by the State Department that aid in the fight against ISIS, other terrorist groups, and other radical extremists.
My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Brussels and all of our allies in Europe. Our response to these atrocities must be to unite with our friends and allies around the world with a renewed commitment to the annihilation of the Islamic State.Read More
The Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs will come to order.
I would like to welcome Secretary Lew to discuss the Fiscal Year 2017 budget request for the Treasury Department’s International Affairs Programs.
The funding under review today supports contributions to international financial institutions, such as the World Bank and regional banks, other contributions to multilateral funds, and technical assistance programs.
The budget request totals $2.3 billion, a $5 million increase above Fiscal Year 2016.
While this may seem like the budget is virtually straight-lined from last year, the budget includes a number of new requests.
Turning to the World Bank and the regional development banks, I remain concerned about the funds this Subcommittee provides.
I would like to hear from you today about the efforts these institutions are making to publicly track funds and provide independent evaluations of program effectiveness.
Additionally, I have been following the growth in contributions by U.S.A.I.D. and the Department of State to trust funds managed by the World Bank and other financial institutions. I am concerned about the lack of oversight of these taxpayer dollars.
The 2016 Omnibus included a shift in U.S. resources at the I.M.F. from the emergency fund to the general quota, and required a number of reforms. I hope you can discuss any recent developments.
Also included in the Administration’s request is $250 million for The Green Climate Fund. Mr. Secretary, I do not have to remind you of the strong opposition by many Members of Congress to any funding for this purpose.
Finally, the United States government is providing an increasing number of loan guarantees to foreign governments. I will ask you about loans and loan guarantees later. I know you have taken a personal interest in boosting the economies of our allies and partners.
Secretary Lew, thank you for being here today. We have many important topics to discuss.Read More
By Jen Judson and Joe Gould
WASHINGTON — A powerful lawmaker with State Department oversight is ripping the foreign military sales processes over lengthy delays in a letter to Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Secretary of State John Kerry demanding they create a plan to fix issues.
“Unfortunately, our current [Foreign Military Financing] and FMS processes are not efficient,” Rep. Kay Granger, R-Texas, writes in a March 4 letter. “I frequently hear from our friends and allies that excessive delays put significant strains on their relationships with the U.S. The damage extends to our industrial base as it is causing many of our partners to seek support elsewhere, including from Russia and China. This has gone on far too long without significant reform. This is unacceptable.”
As chair of the State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee and vice chair of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, Granger notes she recently asked both Carter and Kerry about problems with “cumbersome, bureaucratic and inefficient” FMF and FMS processes during committee hearings and their responses “echoed” her concerns, but failed to articulate any plan to address issues.
Granger asks Carter and Kerry for “specific steps” being taken to reform the process.
Additionally, Granger asks for a plan to expedite delivery of “critical assets” to partners, especially ones contributing to the fight against the Islamic State group. “It is also important for you to identify any key roadblocks you are running into in achieving these goals,” she writes.
The letter comes as the Pentagon agency charged with shepherding FMS recorded a record high of $46.6 billion in FMS for fiscal 2015, up from $34.2 billion in sales in 2014, and $27.8 in 2013.
Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) averages 140 new requests each month, contributing to a backlog 13,000 active cases, its director, Vice Adm. Joseph Rixey said late last year. In response, the DSCA was implementing plans to streamline its processes, forecast probable requests and prioritize the needs of the regional combatant commanders.
Other lawmakers are concerned about delays in the FMS process. Senate Armed Services Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., has criticized delays in the sales of fighter jets to the region and said visiting foreign defense ministers frequently vent frustration to him over stalled arms deals.
"These countries deserve a decision," McCain said last month. "If it’s no, it’s no. If it’s yes, it’s yes."Read More
Navy Senior Chief Edward Byers is the first living Navy SEAL to receive the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War.
It was an honor to attend the Medal of Honor ceremony at the White House for Navy Senior Chief Edward Byers this week. With so much pessimism in our country right now, I wanted to share the inspiring story of bravery and sacrifice displayed by Senior Chief Byers and those who keep us safe.
The Congressional Medal of Honor is our nation’s highest recognition for valor in combat. The incidents leading to the recommendation are carefully reviewed for accuracy throughout the chain of command, and are ultimately reviewed by the president himself. Just 20 service members have received this award since the Vietnam War.
Senior Chief Byers was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during a mission in December 2012. He was part of an operation to rescue an American aid worker held hostage by the Taliban in Afghanistan. Upon entering the compound where the American hostage was held, Senior Chief Byers displayed superior gallantry and heroism at grave personal risk by exchanging close-quarters gunfire and engaging in hand-to-hand combat with multiple adversaries. In the midst of a violent firefight, Senior Chief Byers identified the hostage and threw himself on top of him to shield the hostage from gunfire, at one point even pinning and neutralizing an insurgent against the wall while continuing to protect the innocent American.
Senior Chief Byers’ actions that day, together with his entire distinguished career, are a tremendous credit to the nation he serves. We owe our profound gratitude to him, as well as all of the men and women who choose to serve in uniform to keep us safe. They exemplify the exceptional nature of America, and Americans, representing all that is best about our country.
Kay Granger Member of CongressRead More
1026 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
A former teacher, small business owner and Mayor of Fort Worth, Congresswoman Kay Granger was first elected to represent the 12th congressional district of Texas in 1997. Earning a reputation for pragmatic leadership and serving as a powerful voice for Texas values, Kay fervently fights for the issues that matter most to Texas’ 12th congressional district and our country.
Since arriving in the U.S. House of Representatives, Kay has distinguished herself as one of the most recognized and influential leaders on defense and foreign policy – an expertise she began developing as the Mayor of Fort Worth, which is home to the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base and Lockheed Martin. As a senior member of the powerful Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, she has continually strengthened the 12th District’s contribution to America’s defense system and supported efforts to provide for our women and men in uniform – both on the battlefield and when they return home from combat.
In 2012, Kay stood with Governor Rick Perry and members of the 136th Airlift Wing of the Texas Air National Guard to fight a costly and unnecessary Air Force proposal that looked to move Texas’ prized C-130 squadron to Montana. To the Air Force, Texans, and the millions of Americans who depend on the C-130 aircraft to respond to natural disaster emergencies, Kay delivered a powerful message: C-130s will not be moved without a fight. Thanks to her work as well as that of Governor Perry, Senator Cornyn, Senator Hutchinson and the entire Texas delegation, the C-130’s stayed where they are needed and where they belong: Fort Worth.
Kay has long believed that national security and foreign policy go hand in hand. As the top Republican on the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee, she has worked to increase global stability and security as well enrich the lives of millions in the developing world through efforts that center on bettering global health, improving the lives of women and teaching emerging democracies how to sustain newly-discovered freedoms.
Kay is also a Majority Deputy Whip and serves on the Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development.
In recognition of her achievements, Kay has received the Air Force Foundation Award and the Marine Corps’ Semper Fidelis Award. She has also been honored with the Tax Fighter Award by the National Tax Limitation Committee and the Spirit of Enterprise Award by the U.S. Chamber of Congress. Additionally, the National Association of Manufacturers has recognized her for her pro-growth, pro-worker voting record. For a full list of the awards she’s received, please click here.
Born in Greenville, TX, Kay was raised in Fort Worth. Majoring in education, Kay – a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution – graduated from Texas Wesleyan University and became a high school journalism and English teacher. In 1978, she opened her own insurance agency and operated it for over 20 years, leading her to become the first woman inducted into the Fort Worth Business Hall of Fame. In 1991, she was elected as the first female Mayor of Fort Worth where she cut crime by 49 percent and led the city to win the coveted All-American City Award. Kay, who attends the First United Methodist Church in Fort Worth, is a mother of three and a proud grandmother to five.
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