Vice President Harris is Delivering for Jewish Americans

April 5, 2024

Fighting for Our Values as Vice President: 

  • Vice President Harris has been a leading voice defending democracy and reproductive freedom, which are priority policy issues for Jewish Americans. 
  • In addition to promoting key voting rights and pro-democracy legislation, Vice President Harris has implemented a whole of government strategy to protect the right to vote.
  • Vice President Harris has also led the administration’s efforts to protect abortion rights. She became the highest-ranking official to ever visit an abortion clinic and is steadfast in her support of our reproductive care.
  • Vice President Harris is leading the administration’s efforts to reach out to young voters. She launched her “Fight for our Freedoms College Tour” to speak directly to young voters about the issues they – and Jewish voters — care most about.
  • Vice President Harris is leading the administration’s efforts to reach out to young voters, a critical constituency for JDCA. She launched her “Fight for our Freedoms College Tour” to speak directly to young voters about the issues they – and Jewish voters — care most about.


Commitment to Israel’s Security:

  • Vice President Harris has made it abundantly clear that Israel has a right to defend itself and that she is unwavering in her commitment to Israel’s security. In March of 2024, she reaffirmed this sentiment while addressing a crowd at the anniversary of Bloody Sunday and in December of 2023 in Dubai following a series of meetings with Arab leaders.
  • Since October 7, has prioritized engaging with Israeli leaders to underscore our support for Israel and address latest developments in Gaza and the region. The Vice President has spoken with President Herzog of Israel four times and met with him once; she has met with War Cabinet Member Benny Gantz once; and has joined nearly 20 phone calls between President Biden and Prime Minister Netanyahu. 
  • Vice President Harris has consistently supported full funding for U.S. security assistance to Israel throughout her career, including her time in the Senate.  
  • Before October 7, the Vice President has also prioritized engaging with Israeli government officials, including speaking with Prime Minister Netanyahu, and meeting with then-Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, and President Herzog. 
    • When Israeli President Isaac Herzog visited the United States in July 2023, Vice President Harris met to discuss a range of issues relating to regional integration. The two unveiled an expanded partnership between the US and Israel to combat climate change, including “a new joint initiative between the United States and Israel, working with the U.S. Congress, with the intent to invest $70 million, with up to $35 million from the United States and up to $35 million from Israel, to advance climate-smart agriculture technologies in the Middle East and Africa.”
  • Since October 7, Vice President Harris has articulated the Biden-Harris administration’s strong support for Israel at home and abroad, and has led the administration’s efforts to advance plans for the ‘day after’ the fighting ends in Gaza. She has worked with Israeli, Palestinian, and Arab leaders on these plans, including reconstruction, governance reforms, and security arrangements that are acceptable to Israelis and Palestinians. 
  • Vice President Harris repeatedly called for eliminating the threat Hamas poses to Israel, and has said that Hamas cannot control Gaza. She has repeatedly condemned Hamas as a brutal terrorist organization, including condemning its horrific use of sexual violence on October 7. She has spoken about how Hamas has vowed to repeat October 7 until Israel is annihilated and said, “no nation could possibly live with such danger, which is why we support Israel’s legitimate military objectives to eliminate the threat of Hamas.” 
  • The Vice President has been working alongside President Biden to free all the hostages, including through a temporary ceasefire as part of a hostage deal. She has met with and spoken with Arab leaders as part of the negotiations.   The Vice President has met with and spoken with families of American hostages and expressed her deep support for them.
  • On April 7, 2024, Vice President Harris met with families of Americans taken hostage by Hamas on October 7 and underscored that President Biden and she have no higher priority than reuniting the hostages with their loved ones. She also reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to bring home the remains of those who have been tragically confirmed to be deceased. Vice President Harris again condemned Hamas as a brutal terrorist organization and its horrific use of sexual violence, reaffirmed that the threat Hamas poses to Israel must be eliminated, and denounced the rise of antisemitism worldwide. 


Fighting Antisemitism:

  • When then-Senator Harris visited Yad Vashem in 2017, she wrote: “As we bear witness to the horrors of the Holocaust, let us always strive to remember that we as human beings have so much more in common than what separates us. And by embracing this truth, let us live up to that solemn promise — never again!”
  • In the Senate, Harris took a leading role in combating antisemitism and all forms of hate. Harris was the lead sponsor of S.Res.118, a resolution condemning hate crimes and any other forms of racism, religious or ethnic bias, discrimination, incitement to violence, or animus targeting a minority in the United States. The resolution highlighted the threat posed by antisemitism and its dangerous rise and called on the Trump administration to devote additional resources to combating hate crimes. 
  • In the White House, the Vice President has continuously worked to stand up and fight back against antisemitism whenever and wherever we see it, including through the first-ever National Strategy to Combat Antisemitism. As she has said as Vice President, “When Jews are targeted because of their beliefs or identity, and when Israel is singled out because of anti-Jewish hatred, that is antisemitism, and that is unacceptable.”


Engagement with the Jewish Community and Jewish Traditions:

  • The Vice President and Second Gentleman have been proud to observe Jewish traditions at the Vice President’s Residence and host celebrations there in honor of Jewish holidays. For example, they have hung the first mezuzah at the Residence; hosted the first Passover Seder at the Residence; and lit the first Menorah at the residence. The Vice President has said that these moments are a great source of pride for her and the Second Gentleman and their entire family.


Delivering for the American People as a U.S. Senator:

  • Then-Senator Harris championed legislation to deliver on a range of top priorities for the Jewish community and all marginalized communities. In addition to combating hate crimes and antisemitism, she passed legislation to combat hunger, provide rent relief, improve maternal health care, and address the climate crisis as a member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. Her bipartisan anti-lynching bill passed the Senate in 2018. Her legislation to preserve historically Black colleges and universities was signed into law, as was her effort to infuse much-needed capital into low-income communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Talking Points: President Biden’s strong support of Israel