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December 10, 2021

What's On Our Mind ...

The House took an important step on Thursday to strengthen our democracy with the passage of the Protecting Our Democracy Act.

This act is a historic package of pro-democracy reforms to create new and strengthen existing guardrails to prevent the abuse of executive power, restore Congress as a meaningful check on executive authority, and reinvigorate Congress’s exercise of its own constitutional power.

Republicans almost unanimously rejected this legislation. Only Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) voted for the bill yesterday. Even though Rep. Elizabeth Cheney (R-WY) stood up to Trump and is a member of the committee investigating the January 6th attack on the Capitol, she did not vote for this bill which would prevent another president from abusing the office. Her support would have sent an important message to her party. In the past, many provisions of the bill would have gained bipartisan support.

Meanwhile, Democrats know this issue goes beyond partisan politics. “Today, the House delivered a simple, unequivocal message — our democracy is worth fighting for. We will not allow the abuses that defined the previous administration to become our norms, nor will we will allow a future autocratic president, Democrat or Republican, to exploit weaknesses in our democratic institutions,” said the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA).

The Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack is also dealing with the issues of abuse of power by a president. One of their main goals is to determine what, if any, direct role Donald Trump and his top aides played in directing and orchestrating the assault. Trump's involvement in the planning or execution would be a clear violation of the office of the presidency.

Our democracy is fragile. Its protection is every elected official's duty. But today’s Republicans shirk from that responsibility. They continually choose politics over country.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) threatened this week that when the GOP takes power there will be no real oversight and real subpoenas. “It’s going to be the days of Jim Jordan, Marjorie Taylor Green, and Dr. Gosar and myself.”

Elections have consequences. We need to ensure that JAC candidates are elected to the House and Senate to prevent the extinguishing of our democracy’s bright beacon that Gaetz is anticipating and promoting.

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In the News

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Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and Egypt’s President met to discuss the Iranian threat and Israel’s attempts to reach an agreement with Hamas. GOP Senators introduced a bill to target foreign banks involved in Palestinian ‘martyr payments’ for attacks against Israelis. Negotiations between Iran and world powers aimed at salvaging the nuclear deal resumed with tensions high and few concessions.


A new report reveals that anti-Israel groups are ‘vilifying’ Jewish students on campuses. 17 BDS resolutions were considered and 11 passed at U.S. colleges last year. A presenter at PragerU has been criticized for stating that her spiritual beliefs mean she thinks Jewish people chose to be killed in the Holocaust and that Adolf Hitler went to heaven.

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More than 20 states have "trigger laws," which will ban or severely restrict abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned. As access to abortion dwindles, pro-choice advocates need to turn their focus to state statutes and referendums. The Supreme Court refused to block the Texas "bounty" abortion law but allowed providers to sue in lower courts.


The U.S. Supreme Court listened to arguments in a case that could greatly expand state aid to religious schools. Neil Gorsuch's comment on religious exemptions to vaccine mandates could have terrifying consequences. Majorities in all faith groups agree there’s no ‘valid’ religious exemption against vaccines — except white Evangelicals.

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Biden signed a climate-related executive order requiring the federal government to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. The Supreme Court’s vision of equality likely means the end of abortion rights—but it signals a larger shift in gender inequality. Biden is reshaping the courts and appointing diverse judges.


For Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), the assault on the Capitol came the day after burying his son. Rep. Adam Schiff's (D-CA) bill — the Protecting Our Democracy Act which addresses Trump's abuses of power — passed the House. 400+ congressional staff are calling on House leaders to take action following the anti-Muslim remarks by Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) about Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN).

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Former Sen. Bob Dole, who passed away this week, worked to free Soviet Jews. Following the practice heralded by Deborah Lipstadt, the New York Times updated its style guide to ‘antisemitism,’ losing the hyphen. Jews were the creative forces behind ‘West Side Story’ decades ago and today. Should they be?

The Last Word

"Too many of us have sacrificed too much in defending that freedom from foreign adversaries to allow our democracy to crumble under a state of infighting that grows more unacceptable by the day.”

— Former Sen. Bob Dole (R-KS), in his last op-ed on Dec 6, 2021


Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs (JACPAC) is a pro-Israel PAC with a domestic agenda. We support a strong U.S.-Israel relationship and advocate for reproductive health and the separation of religion and state and incorporate other issues of importance to the Jewish community, including gun violence prevention and climate change. In addition to providing financial support for U.S. Senate and House campaigns, JACPAC educates our membership with outreach events designed to inform and activate their participation in the political process.

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