(UPDATE: As of January 15, Senate Majority Leader McConnell has tried to advance S.1, the bill that includes the
so-called "Combating BDS Act," three times. Each time, McConnell's motions have failed to clear the 60-vote hurdle
to advance, thanks to the vast majority of the Democratic caucus voting against cloture. And each time, immediately
after his cloture motions have failed, McConnell has filed for a subsequent vote, in the apparent belief that
putting Democratic senators on record voting against advancing S.1 will enable Republicans to paint the Democratic
party as insufficiently "pro-Israel."
The vote tallies are as follows. On January 8, S.1 failed to advance by a vote of 56-44. On January 10, the tally
was 53-43. And on January 14, the vote was 50-43. During the first two votes, four Democrats joined with
Republicans in voting to advance S.1: Senators Manchin, Menendez, Sinema, and Jones. In the third vote, Senator
Menendez, dropped his support because “I don’t like the Majority Leader using the US-Israel relationship
as a political pawn.” McConnell has entered a motion for a fourth vote to advance S.1, but as of this
writing that vote has not yet been scheduled.)
Americans for Peace Now (APN) opposes any bill that encourages state and local governments to adopt legislation
which penalizes citizens who boycott Israel and/or Israeli settlements.
The Senate’s first piece of legislation in the 116th session, dubbed S.1, does just that. Referred to as
the “Middle East Security Bill” by its sponsor, Senator Marco Rubio, S.1 incorporates the Combating BDS Act of 2019
into a larger bill that would appropriate security funds for Israel and reauthorize defense cooperation between the
US and Jordan.