Press Release

Gillibrand, Rubio Introduce Bipartisan Legislation Enhancing State Dept Role In Combating Anti-Semitism

Jun 7, 2017

Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act, bipartisan legislation that would enhance the State Department’s role in combating anti-Semitism across the globe. U.S. Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Eliot Engel (D-NY) introduced the companion bill in the House of Representatives.

“At a time of growing anti-Semitism across the globe and here at home, it is vital that we prioritize the fight against this scourge,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This bill would empower the State Department’s Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, and it would ensure that we have someone in that role who can raise the profile of this issue within the Department and in all of our diplomatic efforts.”

“We have seen an alarming rise in anti-Semitism with Jewish communities targeted around the world and even here at home,” said Senator Rubio. “The United States must remain committed to combating anti-Semitism in all its forms, wherever it appears. This bill enhances the position of the Special Envoy and builds upon American leadership on this important issue.”

The Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act would also:

  • Elevate the position of Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism to the rank of ambassador
  • Direct the special envoy to report directly to the secretary of state
  • Prohibit the special envoy from being double-hatted with another portfolio of issues
  • Emphasize that the special envoy should be a person of recognized distinction in the field of combating anti-Semitism or religious freedom
  • Clarify that the special envoy shall be the primary advisor and coordinator for U.S. government efforts to monitor and combat anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic incitement in foreign countries