JACPAC News & Opinion Digest

June 27, 2014 

JAC Around Town
JAC met with elected officials, candidates and leaders around the country.
    JAC met with Senate Candidate Michelle Nunn of Georgia in Chicago. (r to l: Linda Rae Sher, Marcia Balonick, 
Dana Hirt, Joy Malkus, Marilyn Cohn, Senate Candidate Michelle Nunn, Hollis Wein, and Janna Berk

JAC met with Senator Jeff Merkley in downtown Chicago (r to l: Hollis Wein, Evie Fisher, Janna Berk, Senator Jeff Merkley, Tiffany Keane, Talia Rosen, Marcia Balonick, and Kevin Wolfberg
JAC members Hollis Wein and Renne Kahn in the 
Bring Back Our Boys rally in downtown Chicago


Call your Senator and tell them to co-sponsor and help pass the Lori Jackson Domestic Violence Survivor Protection Act.


This Act PROTECTS domestic violence survivors from gun violence by PREVENTING an individual subject to a temporary restraining order from purchasing or possessing a firearm for the duration of the order.
When an abuser owns a gun, there is a 20 times higher risk of homicide.
Let's reduce domestic violence and pass this bill. 

Call Today.
Stay informed,
share your knowledge.

Rep. Gary Peters (MI-14) 

Senate Candidate for MI
June 29th
Bingham Farms, MI
Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ)  
July 1st 
Chicago, IL
Senator Ed Markey (D-MA)
July 20th
At the home of Wendy and Jim Abrams in Highland Park  
Call the JAC office for details on these
and other upcoming events.  


Want to host an event in your area? Contact the JAC office.  

People You Should Know


U.S. Representative 
Brad Schneider  

Congressman Brad Schneider is in a competitive race to win re-election to Illinois' 10th Congressional District.  As a freshman Member of Congress, Schneider has taken a leadership role in advocating or a strong Israel-U.S. relationship. This week he introduced a measure calling for the immediate, unconditional release of the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers held captive in the West Bank. Brad has been a supporter of JAC long before he was elected to the U.S. House. JAC is proud to once again stand by Rep. Schneider.  Support  Brad and keep an advocate for women and Israel in Congress.



U.S. Senator 
Mark Begich


Senator Mark Begich's re-election race is considered one of the top races for 2014 and the outcome could ultimately decide the balance of power in the Senate. He has proven to be a consistent friend to JAC during his first term. He will need JAC's support to keep his seat. Mark believes in a two-state solution to achieve lasting piece in the Mideast.  He has a strong pro-choice record, while his opponent - if elected would eliminate and severely restrict women's reproductive choices.  Sen. Begich needs your support to continue protect women and families. Donate to his campaign today.




As strong proponents of all of JAC's issues, we strongly support Rep. Brad Schneider and Senator Mark Begich.    


Please show your support today.   


On Our Radar

Federal Legislation
we are watching:

* US-Israel Strategic Partnership
* 2015 Appropriations 
* Voting Rights Act
* Unemployment Benefits
* Paycheck Fairness
* Immigration Reform 
* HR 1565 - Public Safety & 2nd
   Amendment Rights Act
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Knowledge is Power
Test your knowledge today!

Welcome to JAC's NEW weekly Quiz Corner. Test your knowledge of JAC issues - if you are the first correct answer, your name will be featured in next week's EZ READ!


Name the decade that a Democrat last won a Senate seat in Kansas.


Have a question you think will stump fellow JAC members? Submit it and we just may use it!


This week's issue highlights these key developments here and in the Middle East:
  • Rep. Schneider Introduces Measure Calling to Release of Israeli Teens
  • Supreme Court Emboldened Ant-Choice Protestors 
  • What if Hobby Lobby wins Religious Freedom Case?
  • A report was just released by Everytown concerning accidental child deaths by guns.
  • Congress reported to close up shop until midterm elections.
  • JAC around town   
  • We know Knowledge is Power - how powerful are you? Introducing our weekly quiz feature! 
  • and so much more! 
This week's EZ Read brings you these stories and some that may have slipped past your news feed.
Israel & The Middle East 
Rep. Brad Schneider Introduces Measure Calling for Release of Kidnapped Teenagers 
U.S. Congressman Brad Schneider (IL-10_ with U.S. Congressman Randy Weber (TX-14) introduced a measure Wednesday calling for the immediate unconditional release of the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers held captive in the West Bank.
Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/05/09/4031477/islamic-cleric-in-gaza-rejects.htmlstorylink=cpy
Israeli students Gilad Sharr, Naftali Frenkel, and Eyal Yifrach were kidnapped in Gush Etzion.

Peres to Congress: Wars Can Be Waged Alone, Peace Calls for Collective Effort

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/05/09/4031477/islamic-cleric-in-gaza-rejects.htmlstorylink=cpy

In his final address to Congress as Israel's president on Thursday, Shimon Peres thanked the U.S. for its friendship and support and urged the Americans to continue working with Israel to reach peace, eradicate terrorism, and eliminate poverty.

President Peres gets a standing ovation after receiving the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian honor the U.S. legislature can confer, June 26h, 2014.

Obama Expresses Concern for Missing Israeli Teens

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/05/09/4031477/islamic-cleric-in-gaza-rejects.htmlstorylink=cpy

President Obama expressed "deep concern" for the missing Israeli teenagers during a meeting with Israeli President Shimon Peres and American Jewish leaders.

Read Full Article

Presbyterian Church (USA) Makes Controverisal Divestment Move Against Israel

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2013/05/09/4031477/islamic-cleric-in-gaza-rejects.htmlstorylink=cpy

The largest U.S. Presbyterian church narrowly voted last Friday to divest from three multinational corporations that it said supply Israel with products that promote violence in occupied Palestinian territories. The divestment, vehemently opposed by many of the nation's prominent Jewish organizations, and hailed by many pro-Palestininan activists, passed by seven votes after hours of tense and complex debate. It means the Presbyterian Church (USA) will sell its shares of Motorola Solutions, Caterpillar and Hewlett Packard, worth about $21 million.


Reproductive Rights
The Supreme Court Just Emboldened Anti-Choice Protestors
Abortion clinics received a major blow on Thursday, when the Supreme Court overturned a law in Massachusetts that gave patients and clinic workers a 35-foot buffer zone around the entrance of clinics, allowing them a few seconds to get into the clinic without having to be harassed by anti-choice protesters. In a surprising unanimous decision, the court found in McCullen v. Coakley that the buffer zone is an unjustified infringement on freedom of speech and told the state of Massachusetts to find another way to keep the peace and allow women to get into abortion clinics without feeling like they have to mace a bunch of people to get free passage (my words, not theirs). 


Eleanor McCullen won the right to harass women all the way to the abortion clinic door after the Supreme Court decision.
House Budget Markup Turns Into Heated Abortion Debate

A House markup of a budget bill turned into a heated and emotional debate about abortion rights on Wednesday morning when a Republican congressman introduced a controversial anti-abortion amendment. Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) offered an amendment to the fiscal 2015 financial services and general government appropriations bill that would prohibit funding for abortions through multistate health plans offered under Obamacare.                                                  Read Full Article


Separation of Religion & State
What to Expect if Hobby Lobby Wins Religious Freedom Case

Sometime before June 30th- the US Supreme Court will decide whether a corporation can have religious beliefs. The Justices are set to rule on whether the Affordable Care Act is infringing on craft sotre chain Hobby Lobby's religious rights by forcing the company to provide full contraceptive coverage to its 13,000 workers as part of its health care plan.

Beyond the Core
Congress Marks 50th Anniversary of Civil Rights Act

Congressional leaders marked the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act on Tuesday by honoring both the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and the bipartisan tactics lawmakers used to pass the bill in 1964.

Read Full Article

Preventing Unintentional Child Gun Deaths

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/04/10/4051905/for-miami-dade-county-a-dispute.html#storylink=cpy
A new report by Everytown, "Innocents Lost: A Year of Unintentional Child Gun Deaths", found that at least 100 children were killed in untended shootings over the course of a year in America - that's almost two a week. Too often these tragedies are reported as inevitable 'accidents' - but our analysis found that 70 percent of these tragedies could have been prevented if the firearm had been stored responsibly.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2014/04/10/4051905/for-miami-dade-county-a-dispute.html#storylink=c
Political Byte
Stick A Fork in this Congress: It's Done Until Midterms

Mark yesterday, June 25, on your calendars: It was the day Congress all but closed up shop to focus on the midterms -- after House Speaker John Boehner announced he would introduce legislation next month to authorize a lawsuit against President Obama over his executive actions in office. "President Obama has circumvented the Congress through executive action, creating his own laws and excusing himself from executing statutes he is sworn to enforce," he wrote. Tellingly, Boehner's letter didn't cite a specific example of illegal or unconstitutional executive action, but his aides say the suit will likely focus on the health-care laws and energy regulations. But how do you expect Congress to get anything done for the rest of the year when the House has decided to sue the president?

House Appropriations Committee Approves Abortion Coverage for Peace Corps Volunteers

The House Committee on Appropriations voted to ensure that women in the Peace Cirps have the same access to abortion care in cases or rape, incest, and life endangerment as other Federal employees and servicewomen.

Scott Walker Case Shows Growing Closeness Between Politicians and Wealthy Allies

A group at the center of campaign finance investigation ensnaring Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has an emphatic retort to prosecutors examining whether its coordination with politicians was illegal: Everybody does it.
Three Israeli Researchers Who Made It Their Life Goal to Beat Parkinson's Disease
Although it is coined a 20th century predicament, Parkinson's disease was actually first discovered in 19th century London by Doctor James Parkinson. Yet even two centuries later, researchers and doctors are still grappling for an explanation as to what causes this neurodegenerative disease that inflicts 500,000 new Americans each year.

Alfred Hitchcock

Hitchcock and the Holocaust

This week's news about the forthcoming restoration and release of what was headlined "Alfred Hitchcock's unseen Holocaust documentary" is mitaged by the fine print in Geoggrey Macnab's report, in the Independent. The film, "Memory of the Camps," made jointy by the British and American governments in 1945, and intended in large measure to confront German citizens with their government's crimes, was left unfinished at the time (on the grounds that it would be counterproductive to the goal of German postwar reconstruction.)

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JAC Video 2014
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If you have not renewed your membership, please consider doing so today, to help us pursue a strong US-Israel relationship, reproductive rights, and separation of religion and state.  Together we can make this a better world!



Janna Berk, 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.