Introduction: Ahead of the White House’s anticipated release of the national strategy on combating antisemitism, officials from the White House task force on antisemitism and Islamophobia recently held a meeting with top Senate and House leaders. The purpose of the meeting was to gather input from lawmakers regarding the administration’s strategy .
Lawmakers Engaged in the Discussion:
- Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-NV), James Lankford (R-OK), and Reps. Kathy Manning (D-NC), Grace Meng (D-NY), Randy Weber (R-TX), and Marc Veasey (D-TX) participated in the meeting with key officials, including Domestic Policy Council Director Susan Rice, Homeland Security Advisor Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff .
- These lawmakers serve as co-chairs of the Senate and House’s antisemitism task forces, which have played a significant role in advocating for a comprehensive strategy to combat the rising issue of antisemitism 1.
Aiming for a Comprehensive Strategy: During an Anti-Defamation League event earlier this month, Susan Rice mentioned that the White House is working towards releasing the national strategy on combating antisemitism later this month 1.
Assessing Progress and Shaping the Strategy: Sen. Jacky Rosen expressed that the purpose of the meeting was to assess the progress made in developing and implementing a national strategy to counter antisemitism. Rosen emphasized her role in calling for this strategy last year and highlighted the opportunity for members of Congress to shape the final document before its release 1.
Prioritizing Safety and Combating Antisemitism: Rep. Grace Meng expressed her appreciation for the insights provided by Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff and Susan Rice regarding the upcoming National Strategy. She emphasized the need to consider her priorities in order to ensure the safety of her Jewish constituents. Meng also emphasized the urgency of addressing the dangerous rise in antisemitism, particularly in her home state of New York, and called for an all-of-government response 1.
Collaborative Efforts to Combat Antisemitism: Sen. James Lankford highlighted the collaborative nature of the meeting, stating that the task forces joined forces with the administration to discuss the National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism. Lankford emphasized their commitment to denounce antisemitism, educate young people about the Holocaust, and raise awareness about the dangers of antisemitism persisting in society .
Gratitude for Commitment to the Cause: Rep. Kathy Manning expressed gratitude to Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff, Ambassador Susan Rice, and Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall for their dedication to addressing this crucial issue. She expressed her willingness to work closely with the Biden administration in the fight against antisemitism .
Whole-of-Society Response: The White House highlighted the urgent need for a comprehensive strategy against antisemitism in a separate readout. Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff emphasized the necessity for such a strategy, while Susan Rice and Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall described the ongoing process of developing the strategy through consultations with various stakeholders. They also emphasized the need for a whole-of-society response to combat antisemitism 1.
Lawmakers’ Contribution to the Strategy: The White House acknowledged that lawmakers provided feedback and insights for the strategy based on their own efforts to counter antisemitism 1.