McConnell accuses Democrats of throwing 'partisan tantrum' over shutdown

Pauline Gross
January 10, 2019

Prominent Senator Diane Feinstein voiced concern Tuesday over legislation that seeks to counter the global Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, Anadolu reports.

French demonstrators and supporters of Palestinians hold a placard with the word "Boycott" during a demonstration in Paris, France on October 31, 2012.

Both of their posts criticized Senate Republicans for introducing the pro-Israel bill Strengthening America's Security in the Middle East Act of 2019, instead of proposing legislation to end the now 17-day government shutdown. The bill was supported only by 56 out of 100 senators, while 60 votes were needed for further consideration of the bill.

Coming amid the partial government shutdown, Democrats said they will block the bill until government is reopened. Chuck Schumer and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, it was a bull-headed president's determination to "govern by temper tantrum" at the expense of the American people, particularly the furloughed workers who stand to miss a scheduled paycheck if the government remains shut down Friday.

The bill also includes military aid to Jordan and Israel, and supports additional sanctions against the Syrian regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

Drilling down, Pew quantified the change within the Democratic Party's progressive wing that's been apparent to Middle East watchers for some time: "The share of liberal Democrats who sympathize more with Israel than the Palestinians has declined from 33% to 19% since 2016".

While announcing the legislation, Gibbs and his co-sponsors laid the blame for the shutdown squarely on the shoulders of their Democratic colleagues. #BDS isn't about freedom & equality, it's about destroying #Israel. "Despite my strong support for Israel, I oppose this bill because it clearly violates the Constitution".

In mind, specifically, are those entities that support the BDS movement - short for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions - a movement that advocates an worldwide boycott of Israel until the sovereign nation acquiesces to pro-Palestine, anti-Israel policies.

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"Currently, almost twice as many liberal Democrats say they sympathize more with the Palestinians than with Israel (35% vs. 19%)".

More than 800,000 federal employees are impacted by the shutdown, including more than 420,000 employees who are on unpaid furlough, and 380,000 "essential" bureaucrats working without pay.

The BDS movement is a global boycott of all things Israeli in order to end worldwide support for Israel's oppression of Palestinians and pressure Israel to comply with worldwide law.

Consider that one year ago, Pew Research polled Americans' attitudes toward Israel and the Palestinians.

"McConnell has the ability to put these bills on the floor and say to the president of the United States, 'We're an independent branch, we're not the president's handmaids, ' " Hoyer added.

To which Senator Marco Rubio tweeted: 'This is a lie.

"It's absurd that the first bill during the shutdown is legislation which punishes Americans who exercise their constitutional right to engage in political activity", Sanders tweeted.

Eight Republicans joined a Democratic majority Wednesday night to approve a vote on the Financial Services & General Government spending bill by a tally of 240-188. In fact, it's a foreign policy that contains as its chief measure a law that would give governments on the state and local level in America the "legal authority to boycott any US companies which themselves are participating in a boycott against Israel". The president mused at a lunch with Senate Republicans at the Capitol that with more time, they might be able to get even more billions in border security from Democrats in exchange for an extension of the DACA program that protects some young undocumented immigrants.

Other reports by GizPress

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