Recently in Legislative Round Ups

APN Legislative Round-Up: January 6, 2017

1. Bills & Resolutions Related to the Recent UNSC settlements Resolution/Obama Abstention
2. Bills & Resolutions Related to Moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
3. Bills & Resolutions Related to Cutting Off UN Funding
4. Bills & Resolutions Related Iran – AUMF & Sanctions
5. Congress Panders to AIPAC et al on Settlements UNSCR
6. Congress on David Friedman Nomination
7. On the Record on Other Things

Welcome to the 115th Congress! Based on this first week, it seems safe to say: fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a very very very bumpy ride (which is probably what Hill watchers/analysts/advocates are right to expect on pretty much every issue, but for those of us working on Middle East/Israel-Palestine, expectations have already turned into a raft of new legislation).

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APN Legislative Round-Up: December 8-16, 2016

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APN Legislative Round-Up: December 7, 2016 [Corrected]

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APN Legislative Round-Up: November 18, 2016 (Lame Duck)

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The Campaign to Legislate Support for Settlements: The Battle in Congress

 As of April 1, 2017, the up-to-date version of this table is found

In 2015, a campaign began in Congress (as well as at the state level) to hijack concerns about BDS against Israel in order to pass legislation giving unprecedented legitimacy and recognition to Israeli settlements by, in effect, making it U.S. policy to treat them as part of Israel. These efforts continue through the present day.

This table  -- which will be updated regularly -- is intended to help people understand and follow what is happening in Congress.

APN rejects this cynical effort to exploit concerns about BDS in order to erase the distinction between Israel and the occupied territories. 

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APN Legislative Round-Up: September 30, 2016

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APN Legislative Round-Up: September 16, 2016

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APN Legislative Round-Up: September 9, 2016

1. Bills & Resolutions
2. Letters
3. Hearings
4. On the Record

Congress returned this week from its summer recess – coming back for a very brief session before it goes back into recess for the final period before November elections. Surprising no one, GOP leaders returned to Washington eager to score points against the Obama Administration over its Iran policy – immediately introducing 6 pieces of Iran-focused legislation (all 100% partisan), on top of a whopping 14 GOP letters sent to the Obama Administration from GOP House and Senate members (over the recess and this week) demanding answers to long and leading lists of questions about Iran-related matters

In addition, this week opened with a faux-anti-BDS event on Capitol Hill – “faux” because, consistent with the trend in Congress for more than a year, the real goal of the event was to legitimize settlements. As noted in Israel Hayom (the paper owned by Sheldon Adelson and viewed as so close to Netanyahu that it is nicknamed, “Bibiton”), the event was instigated by the Shomron Regional Council – the municipal body of settlements in the northern part of the West Bank – and featured settler leader Yossi Dagan. The opening paragraph of the article makes crystal clear the intent of the event: “U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday hosted a unique conference to support the Judea and Samaria settlement enterprise and denounce anti-Israel incitement and the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement's activities on American university campuses.” Also see: A7: Samarian Council takes fight against BDS to Washington (with video); Ynet: Head of Samaria Regional Council speaks at congressional BDS conference; and JPost:  Republican Congressmen: BDS akin to 1930s anti-Semitism.  

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APN Legislative Round-Up: July 9-20, 2016

1. JCPOA Bday Week: Iran-Focused Bills Passed by the House
2. JCPOA Bday Week: New Iran-Focused Bills & Resolutions
3. JCPOA Bday Week: Action on Existing Iran-Focused Bills & Resolutions
4. JCPOA Bday Week: Iran-Focused Letters
5. Other Bills, Resolutions & Letters (Not Focused Solely on Iran)
6. Hearings (more Iran here, too!
7. On the Record: Slamming the JCPOA, Supporting Iran bills, etc
8. On the Record: Defending the JCPOA, Opposing Iran bills, etc
9. On the Record: About Everything Other Than Iran

As expected, last week – which marked the one-year anniversary of the Iran nuclear deal, known as the JCPOA – was for Iran deal opponents in Congress an opportunity for unremitting grandstanding, including with the introduction, promotion, and passage of various pieces of legislation designed to undermine or effectively cancel the agreement (see Washington Post 7/11: House GOP to tackle new Iran sanctions before leaving town). Those efforts were also unapologetically and overtly partisan (see Foreign Policy 7/12: House Dems Rebel Against GOP’s Iran Sanctions Push). For its part (and probably reflecting this partisan problem), AIPAC appears for now to be keeping its powder dry: it sent a memo to the Hill last week (Taking Stock: The Iran Deal One Year Later) acknowledging that the JCPOA has worked in reducing the threat of Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon and calling on Congress to take a range of actions to get tougher on Iran (a list well worth keeping around for future reference); however, as of this writing the AIPAC “legislative agenda” page does not endorse any of the pending Iran-related measures.

Also: APN on the JCPOA at One Year: A Clear Win for Both the U.S. & Israel; APN resources on the anniversary of the JCPOA are here.

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APN Legislative Round-Up: July 8, 2016

1. Bills, Resolutions & Letters
2. Hearings
3. On the Record

NOTE: July 14 will mark the one-year anniversary of the JCPOA. It is likely no coincidence that this week and next week, Iran is a big topic of discussion and grandstanding around Iran.

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