APN Urges House to Reject Combating BDS Act

Washington, DC – Following the Senate’s passage today of Senate Bill 1 (S.1), including the so-called Combating BDS Act, the bill will be transmitted to the House of Representatives.

APN strongly urges the House not to follow in the footsteps of the Senate. By blocking this legislation, the House will reject attempts to turn Israel into a partisan wedge issue, protect free speech, and highlight the distinction between sovereign Israel and West Bank settlements.  

APN rejects BDS against Israel. APN believes that as a tactic to challenge Israeli policies that are inconsistent with Israeli-Palestinian peace, BDS is the wrong approach. We view it as misguided, ineffective, and counterproductive. APN advocates boycotting settlement products and recognizes the legitimacy and potential value of other activism directly and narrowly targeted at settlements and the occupation. APN’s policy on BDS is here.

Despite our opposition to BDS, APN has opposed S.1 since it was introduced, and called on our activists to ask their senators to reject it. 

As we have stated previously, this legislation was designed to be a political trap. By bundling security aid for Israel with controversial legislation that violates civil liberties, the bill sets up senators to be labeled as “insufficiently pro-Israel” if they refuse to endorse the latter. In order to score political points, this bill will further erode the historic bipartisan consensus around a strong US-Israel relationship.

APN’s opposition to the Combating BDS Act is two-fold. First, this legislation erases the distinction between sovereign Israel and its settlements in the occupied West Bank by treating boycotts of the two as if these entities were one and the same. Second, it tramples on First Amendment rights by encouraging states to punish Americans who engage in boycotts. 

Federal district courts have issued injunctions in cases brought by the ACLU, ruling that laws in Kansas and Arizona violate the constitutionally protected right to boycott.

APN calls on Speaker Nancy Pelosi to advance legislation authorizing security assistance for Israel, without tethering it to legislation that is both anti-peace and anti-democratic.

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Americans for Peace Now Urges Senate to Reject the Combating BDS Act of 2019

(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.

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APN Mourns the Passing of Amos Oz, an Iconic Leader of Israel's Peace Movement

Americans for Peace Now (APN) sends its condolences to the Oz family and to the people of Israel, who today lost Amos Oz, a literary giant, a beacon of morality and humanity, and a founder of Israel’s peace movement.

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Statement of Pro-Diplomacy Groups Regarding U.S. Policy Toward Iran

Pro-diplomacy groups representing millions of American voters urge lawmakers to publicly articulate and support the following principles with respect to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that verifiably blocks each of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear weapon and created a much-needed diplomatic relationship between Iran, the United States, and U.S. allies:
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APN to Trump: Stop Impending Wholesale "Legalization" of West Bank Settlement Outposts

The government of Israel seems to be on the verge of legalizing scores of illegal settlement-outposts in the West Bank and making it dramatically easier for Israeli settlers to construct more such outposts on privately-owned Palestinian land.

APN is alarmed by these dangerous developments. We call on the Trump administration, as well as friends of Israel in the United States and worldwide, to tell Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that more West Bank settlements are not the answer to terrorism and that they further jeopardize Israeli-Palestinian peace.

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APN Condemns Palestinian Terror Attacks; Urges Leaders to Prevent Escalation 

Americans for Peace Now (APN) joins its Israeli sister-organization Shalom Achshav (Peace Now) in condemning this week's Palestinian terrorist attacks in the West Bank and East Jerusalem and in urging both Israeli and Palestinian leaders to prevent further escalation.

APN sends its condolences to the families of the victims of this week's attacks and wishes a full recovery to those injured.

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APN Mourns the Passing of George H. W. Bush

Washington, DC – Americans for Peace Now (APN) mourns the passing of President George H. W. Bush and salutes his legacy of efforts to advance peace between Israel and its neighbors. 

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APN Resources for the 116th Congress

Americans for Peace Now (APN) congratulates the legislators elected yesterday to the House of Representatives and the Senate. In particular, we welcome new members of Congress. As they prepare to come to Washington, we encourage them to deepen their understanding of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We invite them to use APN as a resource for enhancing their efforts on Capitol Hill to advance peace between Israel, the Palestinians, and the Arab world.

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Trump's New Iran Sanctions Isolate US and Increase Risk of War

Americans for Peace Now (APN) opposes the Trump administration's decision to reimpose sanctions on Iran, a step that jeopardizes both American and Israeli security and is likely to embolden Iran's hardliners. 

Following President Trump's decision in May to place the United States in violation of the Iran nuclear deal, his administration today reimposed sanctions intended to cripple Iran's economy.

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APN Statement on the Fatal Mass Shooting at Pittsburgh Synagogue

Americans for Peace Now (APN) is devastated and outraged by the mass shooting murder at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life congregation. We offer heartfelt condolences to the families whose loved ones were killed and wish full recovery to those injured.

This mass shooting is likely the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in US history, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). As an American Jewish organization, APN is extremely concerned by rising anti-Semitism in the US and worldwide.

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