A group of California lawmakers are pushing efforts to pass legislation that would prevent the Golden State from contracting with companies that refuse to do business with Israel, on the basis of discrimination and antisemitism against the only Jewish state in the world.
Assembly Bill 1552 is aimed at stopping the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which seeks to delegitimize the State of Israel through economic, political and cultural isolation. The Sacramento Bee notes that Israel is a member of the World Trade Organization and Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach)’s bill would prohibit firms that boycott any member state of the WTO from holding California state contracts.
Allen, who introduced the legislation in January, says AB 1552’s message is clear — “a real pushback against this fringe movement by a handful of extremists that are trying to demonize and discriminate against Israel.”
While the bill has reportedly drawn support from Democrats like Sen. Bob Hertzberg (D-Van Vuys) and Sen. Marty Bock (D-San Diego), several Democrats are not backing it for reasons yet to be determined.
Additionally, the Bee notes that members of Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, have also backed Allen’s bill. Last month, the Knesset’s Deputy Speaker, Hilik Bar, sent a letter praising AB 15552 for bolstering “California’s long-standing alliance to their economic allies.” Bar noted that in May and June, South Carolina and Illinois passed similar legislation and noted that “California must not only follow suit, but establish its place as a leader on this issue.”
Allen told Breitbart News that “there is a huge effort across the country to fight back against the antisemitism and prejudice of the BDS movement.” He noted how proud he was that historic anti-BDS legislation is on its way to being passed here in California.
Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz.