October 26, 2023

Van Hollen, Blackburn, Rosen, Lankford Bipartisan Resolution Condemning Antisemitism Passes Senate Unanimously

Today, the bipartisan resolution condemning antisemitism led by U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Jacky Rosen (D-N.V.) and James Lankford (R-Okla.) passed the Senate unanimously. The Senators’ resolution condemned cases of antisemitism at institutions of higher education and encouraged college and university leaders to speak out against antisemitism.  

“There is no place in America for antisemitism. I was proud to join Senators Blackburn, Rosen, and Lankford in introducing a bipartisan Senate resolution that makes that clear. At this time of trauma and turmoil, we must do even more to call out antisemitism and other types of bigotry and hate in all their ugly forms,” said Senator Van Hollen.

The text of the resolution is as follows:

Whereas, in the aftermath of the terrorist attack on Israel by Hamas on October 7, 2023, there has been a rise in incidents of antisemitism, including hate speech and intimidation, on college campuses and universities in the United States, creating an atmosphere of fear for Jewish students and faculty;

Whereas the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance has developed a widely accepted working definition of antisemitism which can serve as a helpful tool for education administrators and faculty to identify antisemitism;

Whereas acts of hate, discrimination, and violence based on religion or ethnicity have no place at institutions that exist to further education and understanding between diverse student bodies; and

Whereas freedom of speech and expression are foundational principles of institutions of higher education in the United States, but when these principles are used to promote violence, hatred, or discrimination on the basis of religious beliefs, national origin, or ancestry, higher education leaders have the right and an obligation to respond:

Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) strongly condemns any instances of antisemitism occurring at colleges and universities in the United States;

(2) encourages higher education leaders, including presidents, deans, and administrators, to publicly condemn speech that incites or celebrates violence against any people based on religious beliefs, national origin, or ancestry; and

(3) encourages institutions of higher education to engage with Jewish student organizations and ensure that Jewish students, faculty, and staff can pursue their academic and personal aspirations without fear.