Mark Kirk

DC Branch of Knesset

The U.S. Congress sounds increasing like the Washington branch of the Knesset.  I'm just waiting for Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul to show up on the Senate floor wearing yarmulkes.

Senators debating the Iran bill this week have been busy trying to out-Israel each other.

Among the most ardent are Presidential hopefuls and senators facing tough reelection campaigns.  A number of them were in Las Vegas last weekend kissing the ring of billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who they hope will dip into his billions to fund their campaigns.

Sanctions Bill Founders Again On Obama Veto Threat

01/26/2015

Washington (Washington Jewish Week) — For the second year running, a bid to pass a bill intensifying sanctions against Iran appears to be foundering on threat of a presidential veto.

CPAC Disses Disability Voters; Republicans Doomed To Fail

Day one of the Conservative Political Action Conference, the biggest confab of conservative political activists, was underway. As a non-partisan political junkie, I was there. I was just feet away from Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), as they gave their speeches to standing ovations of thousands of conservatives. However, for all the enthusiasm in the room, disability issues alone show that if things don’t change, the Republicans are doomed to fail in their election goals yet again. Indeed, policies for people disabilities were completely absent from the speeches of Rubio, Paul and others at CPAC gathering.

Sen. Marco Rubio

Legislation To Support Shoah Survivors Introduced

07/03/2012

Three U.S. senators introduced legislation aimed at supporting programs to assist aging Holocaust survivors, many of whom live in Brooklyn.

The bipartisan measure, Responding to Urgent needs of Survivors of the Holocaust (RUSH), was introduced June 28 by original cosponsor Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) along with Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.).

Sens. Barbara Mikulski, left, Ben Cardin and Mark Kirk are cosponsors of the RUSH Act.

Berman, Ros-Lehtinen Introduce Toughened Iran Sanctions

05/18/2011

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A bipartisan bill introduced by top lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives would considerably tighten sanctions on Iran.

The bill, introduced May 13 by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), the chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Rep. Howard Berman (D-Calif.), its ranking Democrat, would ban business with any entity that does $1 million in a single trade with Iran's energy sector, or $5 million over one year.

It also would expand sanctions against alleged human rights violators and financial institutions that deal with Iran.

Gillibrand, Kirk Mobilize Senate on Palestinian Incitement

03/17/2011
Assistant Managing Editor

 A letter circulating in the Senate calls on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to detail steps the U.S. is taking to end Palestinian incitement against Israeli civilians. The letter is in response to Friday’s stabbing massacre of five members of a Jeiwsh family in the West Bank settlement of Itamar.

Bipartisan Push In Congress For Tougher Iran Sanctions

02/18/2011
Assistant Managing Editor

Citing the movement of two Iranian warships toward the Suez Canal and a potential confrontation with Israel, a bipartisan group of members of Congress on Wednesday called for tougher sanctions against Tehran to thwart its nuclear ambitions.

"If we can bring greater transparency to any investment being made in Iran, we can defund nuclear development in one of the world’s most hostile nations,” said New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a Democrat, in a conference call with reporters. “America can not and will not tolerate a nuclear Iran.”

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