How Democrats are responding to antisemitism

April 26, 2024

Dear friends,

Since October 7, we’ve seen a dramatic rise in antisemitism and anti-Israel sentiment on college campuses, including protests that glorified terrorism and called for violence targeting Jews. Jewish students and faculty deserve safety and security on campus, and it’s important that we listen to their voices and views as we navigate the path forward.

Keep reading for what JDCA-endorsed Democrats are saying about rising antisemitism on college campuses, and register now to attend a special JDCA event on Thursday, May 2 at 12:00 p.m. ET  — Voices From Campus: Standing Together Against Antisemitism, where we will discuss rising antisemitism with CEO of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs Amy Spitalnick, Jewish on Campus CEO Julia Jassey, and former JDCA Organizing Fellow and current Columbia University student Jacob Schmeltz. Additional speakers may be added. 

This week, President Biden condemned recent calls for violence against Jews, saying: “Blatant Antisemitism is reprehensible and dangerous — and it has absolutely no place on college campuses, or anywhere in our country…My commitment to the safety of the Jewish people, the security of Israel, and its right to exist as an independent Jewish state is ironclad.”

While speaking with Israeli President Isaac Herzog, Vice President Kamala Harris discussed the: “Deplorable cases of harassment and calls for violence against Jews. The Vice President condemned this reprehensible antisemitism as well as the rise in antisemitism around the world, and she underscored her and President Biden’s commitment to speak out against it.”

Congresswoman and JDCA-endorsed candidate for Senate, Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) said: “Whether at Columbia, the University of Michigan, or any American campus, the use of intimidation, antisemitic signs and slogans, or harassment is unacceptable — and those engaging in violence or threats of violence should be held accountable. Students of any faith or no faith should be able to learn in safety. Peaceful protest is as American as apple pie, but hate speech has no place on our campuses.”

Senator and JDCA-endorsed candidate, Jacky Rosen (D-NV) said: “I’m outraged by the vile displays of antisemitism at Columbia University, including threats of violence. Colleges and universities have a legal responsibility to protect their Jewish students from such discrimination, and I’ll keep fighting to ensure they’re held accountable.”

Congressman and JDCA-endorsed candidate for Senate, Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) said: “We cannot stand for antisemitism and harassment. That includes not only Columbia University but in any space. Columbia’s failure to protect its Jewish students is enraging, and those responsible for hate speech and violent rhetoric should be held accountable.”

Congressman Dan Goldman (D-NY) after visiting Columbia University: “After touring Columbia with Jewish students today, I’m deeply disturbed by what I saw and heard. They feel unsafe and scared, which is simply unacceptable. Columbia must not just reiterate its policies but take the necessary actions to ensure the safety of its Jewish students.”

Our event on Thursday, May 2 will feature the perspectives of students who are experiencing harassment, intimidation, and antisemitism on campus, as well as experts. We hope you will join this important discussion.

Shabbat Shalom,

Hon. Ron Klein
Board Chair, Jewish Democratic Council of America

Halie Soifer
CEO, Jewish Democratic Council of America