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Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs

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JACPAC's News & Opinion Digest

June 8, 2012  

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June 21st
JAC's 2nd Annual Power of Women Brunch
Key Note Speaker Carol Leifer
Lincolnwood, IL

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Upcoming Political Events

Tammy Duckworth Breakfast with Reps. Jan Schakowsky &  Steny Hoyer
Chicago, IL
June 12

Sen. Dick DurbinLunch with David Axelrod & Jim Messina
Chicago, IL
June 15

Rep. Bill Foster Cocktails & Conversation

Lake Forest, IL
June 16

Brad Schneider Reception with Bill Daley
Highland Park, IL
June 13th

Sen. Chuck Schumer
Lunch with Sen. Bill Nelson, & Sen. Robert Menendez
New York, NY
June 25

Tammy Duckworth & Rep. Jan Schakowsky Reception
Evanston, IL
July 22

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This week's issue highlights the following significant developments here and in the Middle East:



Remember to check out our blog to keep up with current issues and opinion and to sort fact from fiction on the Internet.  Be sure to read Presidential Ponderings, thoughts and observations from JACPAC President Gail Yamner. 

Israel & The Middle East
usiraeliranU.S. Aides in Israel Give Assurances About Iran
President Obama and his senior advisers have said little publicly about Iran since the resumption of negotiations over its nuclear program in April, preferring to let the diplomats hash out the issues in the hope that tensions with Tehran can be managed, at least until the election in November.

 Palestinians: Refugees forever?
A couple of weeks ago the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee unanimously passed the Kirk Amendment as part of the State Department and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill for 2013. The bill requires the State Department to specify to Congress, for the first time, what proportion of the five million Palestinians who are supported by UNWRA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees, are refugees who were actually displaced from their homes and what number are descendant of those refugees.

It's a Place, Not a Conflict
Sitting on the edge of my hotel bed here two Sundays ago, I watched a "60 Minutes" segment on Tel Aviv, the place I call home. It made me think two unkindly thoughts.

Khaled Abu Toameh: Where Are the Moderate Arabs and Palestinians?

In Israel, there are dozens of organizations and parties that openly advocate peace with the Palestinians and the Arab world.  Some even go as far as calling on the Israeli government to comply with 100% of the Palestinians' demands by fully withdrawing to the pre-1967 lines. 

The Brothers Abbas
Are the sons of the Palestinian president growing rich off their father's system?

After Toulouse, More Attacks on Jews
When four Jews were killed in an apparent terrorist attack in Toulouse, France, in March, interest in the story quickly evaporated when the shooter turned out to be a Muslim extremist rather than a neo-Nazi, as it was first believed.

Ethiopian-Israeli Jews, mistaken for African migrant workers, feel racism's pain
When violent riots against African migrant workers erupted in south Tel Aviv recently, a mob attacked Hanania Wanda, a Jew of Ethiopian origin, mistaking him for a Sudanese migrant worker.   


Reform and Conservative Leaders Deemed Rabbis, to Receive Israeli State Funds
The Israeli government announced on Tuesday that, for the first time, it will pay the salaries of a small number of Reform and Conservative rabbis who are considered leaders in their communities, and will also recognize them as rabbis.

Reproductive Rights

morningafterAbortion Qualms on Morning-After Pill May Be Unfounded
Labels inside every box of morning-after pills, drugs widely used to prevent pregnancy after sex, say they may work by blocking fertilized eggs from implanting in a woman's uterus. Respected medical authorities, including the National Institutes of Health and the Mayo Clinic, have said the same thing on their Web sites.

House Republican to introduce anti-abortion-rights bill targeting District
House Republicans are continuing their efforts to restrict abortions in the District of Columbia, announcing plans to introduce a new anti-abortion-rights bill in Congress.

Rep. Bruce Rendon's Anti-Abortion "Super-Bill" On Fast Track in Michigan Legislature

In Michigan, Republican State House Representative Bruce Rendon has introduced an anti-abortion "super bill"-one piece of legislation that includes protocol for screening women for coercion prior to an abortion, along with several TRAP laws including new liability insurance requirements for abortion providers, the regulation of abortion clinics as surgical facilities, and new restrictions on the disposal of fetal remains.

A Jewish Response to Abortion
I was attending an all women, progressive college during the time when abortion became legal in the United States. I vividly remember discussing the issue with my friends and with the medical student I was dating the year of Roe v. Wade.

CI-108 would expand government intrusion in Montanans' lives 
As voters in the state of Montana, we are skeptical of CI-108, the so-called personhood amendment currently seeking qualification for the November 2012 ballot. This initiative, if qualified for and passed on the November ballot, would define "personhood" under the Montana Constitution as beginning at the moment of fertilization.

Today in the United States, our religious freedoms are under attack.  


Phil Bryant, Mississippi Governor, Advocates Nondenominational School Prayer 'At Some Point'
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant last week advocated for nondenominational school prayer in front of an audience of teenagers, the Clarion Ledger reports.

Political Bytes

Florida Gov. Scott appears ready to fight DOJ on voter rolls purge
Gov. Rick Scott's administration is positioning itself for a showdown with the U.S. Department of Justice for demanding that Florida cease searching for and purging noncitizen voters.

wisconsinAnalysis: Lessons from the Wisconsin recall vote
Here are what the results of Tuesday night's Wisconsin recall election mean for four key political players: Gov. Scott Walker, labor unions, President Obama, and Mitt Romney.

The top 10 icons of Israeli high-tech - part one 

Long before Israel was known as the startup nation, skilled and visionary men were already putting it on course as the next Silicon Valley. In the first of a two-part series, ISRAEL21c takes a look at Israel's top 10 high-tech pioneers.


aliMuhammad Ali attends grandson's bar mitzvah
The grandson of legendary boxer Muhammad Ali became a bar mitzvah at a Philadelphia synagogue.

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Gail Yamner, President
Marcia Balonick, Executive Director
Joy Malkus, Research Director 

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Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs (JACPAC) is a national network committed to the special relationship between the US and Israel and a social agenda that includes reproductive rights and separation of religion and state.  JACPAC supported US Senate and House candidates who uphold this agenda and maintains ongoing dialogue with those it helps elect.  In addition, JACPAC serves as a political resource for the Jewish community, furnishing information about candidates, elections and issues.