Durbin Discusses Need for Efforts to Combat Antisemitism and Importance of Two-State Solution With Illinois Members of J Street

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Illinois members of J Street to discuss the recent uptick in antisemitism across the nation and the dangers posed by online hate against religious minorities. In the meeting, Durbin discussed his ongoing efforts to protect targeted populations from harassment and physical violence.  They also discussed the continued need for a two-state solution between the Israelis and Palestinians.   

“Attacks against America’s Jewish communities and other religious minorities pose a significant threat to the physical safety and liberties of many of our citizens,” Durbin said. “We must understand that white supremacists and militia violent extremists remain the most lethal domestic terrorism threat facing the United States today. As I discussed with J Street members today, this threat must be confronted with the full force of the federal government. I also want to thank J Street for not giving up on the vision for a two-state solution between the Israeli and Palestinian people.”

Photos of the meeting can be found here.

The Center for Countering Digital Hate and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) found that the number of antisemitic tweets skyrocketed by more than 61 percent in the two weeks following Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter. Further, the FBI’s 2020 Hate Crime Statistics report included the highest number of reported hate crimes since 2001 and a 16 percent increase from 2019, with offenses against the Jewish community accounting for 54 percent of all religiously-motivated hate crimes. 

In March 2021, Durbin reintroduced the Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act, which would enhance the federal government’s efforts to prevent domestic terrorism by requiring federal law enforcement agencies to regularly assess this threat, focus their resources on the most significant domestic terrorism threats, and provide training and resources to assist state, local, and tribal law enforcement in addressing these threats. In May, after the House passed the bill and sent it to the Senate, Senate Republicans filibustered the legislation.