August 28, 2015
This Week In JAC
Sadly, once again this week, we were glued to the TV, internet and social media as the tragic shooting in Virginia unfolded. And once again, we asked ourselves "when will this stop?" No other developed country experiences this epidemic of gun violence, now averaging one mass shooting a day.

Condolences, community vigils, and prayers to families occur immediately. Real change takes longer, but it can happen. The Brady Background Check took six years and seven votes in Congress to pass. Since signed into law, it has prevented 2.1 million gun purchases to dangerous individuals.

If we as a nation want to end gun violence, we need to do one thing
- vote and support candidates who will go to stand up to the NRA. As President Obama's Press Secretary Josh Earnest said on Wednesday, "There is no piece of legislation that will end all violence in this country. (But) there are some common sense things that only Congress can do that we know will have a tangible impact on reducing gun violence in this country."

Elections matter.
JAC candidates support common sense gun laws. Do something today to end gun violence. With your vote, you have the power to make change happen and keep our children and loved ones safe.

Iran Nuclear Deal Resources
White House Iran Deal Fact Sheet

The White House has assembled fact sheets, a Twitter account (@TheIranDeal) and more to answer your questions about the Iran Nuclear Deal.

Click here to read the full agreement.


See which way Senators and Representatives are leaning in their support of the Iran Deal by clicking below.

Latest House Whip Report
Latest Senate Whip Report

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Former JAC President Betsy Sheerr with
Hillary Rodham Clinton


Do you have photos from JAC events or with JAC-supported candidates? Send them to [email protected] to be included in future EZ Reads!


Talking Points Highland Park
with special guest 
Rep Ted Deutch (FL-21)
September 21
Northbrook, IL  
12:00 - 1:30


Detroit Membership Event 
Details to come

Want to host a JAC event near you? Plea
se contact the JAC office and we will help coordinate.

For more information and to RSVP, contact the JAC office at 847-433-5999 or [email protected]


Meet the supporters of common sense gun legislation in the House and Senate: 


  • assault weapons ban
  • expanded background checks at gun shows
  • closing loopholes in the background check system
  • preventing domestic abusers from obtaining guns

Senators clockwise from top left: Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY)

House members clockwise from top left: Rep. Elizabeth Esty (CT-5), Rep. Robin Kelly (IL-2), Rep. Jackie Speier (CA-14), and Rep. Mike Quigley (IL-5)


Calling All Students!

Join the National Day of Action October 2nd on campuses around the country to call for action on climate change. Know Tomorrow is a growing organization of students who demand action on the climate. #knowtomorrow 

Guns in America
  • 74 school shootings since Newtown - including this week's shooting at an Oregon high school
  • Law enforcement fatalities are up 53% from 2013 - including this week's murder of two Las Vegas police officers
  • Ambush of law enforcement has risen drastically and was the leading cause of fatal shootings of officers 2 years in a row - 2012-2013
  • Legal loopholes are fueling a growing market in gun trafficking across state lines
  • In Chicago alone, 60% of guns recovered in crimes were initially purchased in states with weaker gun laws
  • More than 21 million guns were purchased in 2013, a record high from 2012.
  • June 2015 saw 1.53 million gun purchase background checks performed -- the busiest month on record
  • Federal background checks have blocked more than 2.1 million gun purchases since the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act went into effect in 1994
  • Americans are 20 times more likely to be murdered by a gun than those in other countries
  • There are more gun-related deaths in the U.S. annually than traffic deaths
  • New safety regulations for cars have reduced traffic-related fatalities. What new safety regulations are there for guns? NONE
Sources: FBI; Brady Campaign; Everytown for Gun Control; City of Chicago (Office of the Mayor, Chicago Police Department); National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence 

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Join with Hillary

If you would like to support Hillary,
please contact the JAC office at
847-433-5999 or
[email protected]

Our combined contributions make our voices stronger.  There IS
Iran Nuclear Deal
A Nuclear Physicist Explained the Science Behind the Iran Deal   
After many months of principled diplomacy, the P5+1 - the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, Russia and Germany - along with the European Union, have achieved a long-term comprehensive nuclear deal with Iran that will verifiably prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon and ensure that Iran's nuclear program will be exclusively peaceful going forward. Now, with this deal in place, the U.S., our allies, and the international community can know that tough, new requirements will keep Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Here's how:
Congress, Don't Isolate America Again Over Iran
by Ambassador Samantha Power
Serving as the United States ambassador to the United Nations, where we hold one of five permanent seats of the UN Security Council and are one of 193 member states, I spend virtually every day interacting with foreign diplomats-diplomats who are tracking the debate in Congress like they tracked the World Cup soccer pairings last year. And from this vantage point, I believe that rejecting this deal would significantly weaken our ability to achieve our broader foreign policy goals-most of which in 2015 require us to mobilize broad international coalitions.
10 Questions for President Obama About Iran 
It appears likely, as of this writing, that Barack Obama will be victorious in his fight to implement the Iran nuclear deal negotiated by his secretary of state, John Kerry. Republicans in Congress don't appear to have the votes necessary to void the agreement, and Benjamin Netanyahu's campaign to subvert Obama may be remembered as one of the more counterproductive and shortsighted acts of an Israeli prime minister since the rebirth of the Jewish state 67 years ago.
Israel & The Middle East 
Israel said to import $1 billion in oil from Iraqi Kurds 
Israel has reportedly imported nearly 1 billion dollars' worth of oil from Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdish region in the past few months. According to the report, Israel purchased 19 million barrels of Kurdish oil, worth roughly $1 billion, between May and August of this year. The massive amount meets two-thirds of the Jewish state's oil needs and may be a way for Jerusalem to covertly support the Kurds' fight against the Islamic State 

Flags outside the United Nations. Photo source: Wikimedia

Vatican tells Palestinians it won't join the UN flag bid 
The Vatican on Tuesday reportedly requested it be taken off a UN General Assembly Draft resolution prepared by Palestinian diplomats calling for the flags of Palestine and the Holy See to be flown at the world body's New York headquarters.
Read Full Article

Israel and Hamas Appear to Be Advancing Toward Ending the Seige on the Gaza Strip 
One year into the cease-fire agreement that ended last summer's 50-day war in the Gaza Strip, Israel and Hamas appear to be advancing toward a series of understandings -- an agreement, even -- that would practically end the siege on the Gaza Strip and bring long-term quiet to the area. The agreement talks are being mediated by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who three months ago stepped down as the longtime envoy of the international Quartet..
Read Full Article
Anti-Semitism & BDS
Denying the Israel-bashers -- kudos to Oprah and other principled stars 
For years, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement has worked to make Israel an international pariah. Happily, it's started seeing some serious pushback from some serious names.

The Matisyahu affair: In Europe, conflating Jew and Israel

A Spanish music festival's recent decision to rescind its invitation to the American reggae singer Matisyahu, after he declined to endorse a Palestinian state, brought international attention to a phenomenon that many European Jews have been feeling for years: that they are being targeted for Israel's actions.

Jon Bon Jovi & Oprah Winfrey. Photo Source: TripleM Music
Reproductive Rights
Abortion foes find new ways to get details about patients, doctors
A few years back, Jonathan Bloedow filed a series of requests under Washington state's Public Records Act asking for details on pregnancies terminated at abortion clinics around the state. For every abortion, he wanted information about the woman's age and race, where she lived, how long she had been pregnant and how past pregnancies had ended. He also wanted to know about any complications, but he didn't ask for names.
30-Year War on Planned Parenthood
As a secretive anti-abortion group continues to leak videos selectively edited to portray Planned Parenthood officials breaking federal law, a swarm of states, from New Hampshire to Utah, have renewed efforts to strip the country's largest women's health care organization of government funding. But history shows that anti-abortion lawmakers don't need damning videos to mount attacks on Planned Parenthood. A look back at these older attempts to defund Planned Parenthood shows that today's onslaught is part of a broader, three-decade-old campaign by anti-abortion lawmakers to jeopardize family planning dollars.
14 Ways women Still Aren't Equal to Men
The feminist movement has made gigantice strides over the years - but nearly a century since women were given the right to vote, the sad fact of the matter is there's still lots of work to do. Here are some of the ways women are not yet equal to men.
Read Full Article
Separation of Religion & State
Kentucky county clerk must issue marriage licenses
A U.S. appeals court on Wednesday ruled that a Kentucky county clerk must issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, turning down her request to stay a judge's ruling that she said violated her religious beliefs.
Photo Credit: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Ted Cruz tries to rouse evangelicals with campaign against Planned Parenthood
Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz is waging a campaign to defund Planned Parenthood, an effort involving pastors, sermons and fasting that the Texas senator insists isn't political.
Gun Violence in America
Dan Rather: Journalists are failing on gun violence
In the wall-to-wall coverage, we will learn a lot about the individuals involved and the events that led up to Wednesday morning's tragedy. The cable networks will bring out the requisite talking heads on gun violence who they undoubtedly have on speed dial by now. We will wring our hands, talk about missed warning signs, and ultimately move on. We'll throw up our hands like we always do. It pains me to say this, but this is journalistic malpractice and a societal tragedy.

Walmart to stop selling AR-15 and similar guns
Walmart will stop selling military-style weapons in response to slumping demand. General speaking, gun sales have been strong this summer. The Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted 1.6 million background checks in July for all gun sales, not just semiautomatic weapons. That's up from 1.4 million total checks in July of 2015.
Read Full Article

Australian comedian perfectly sums up why other countries think US gun laws are crazy
Gun injuries are public health emergency, 9 organizations say
Seven medical specialty societies, the American Bar Assn. and the American Public Health Assn. on Monday joined forces to declare gun-related injuries, which annually kill an average of 32,000 Americans and harm nearly twice that number, "a public health crisis" that should be studied and solved "free of political influence or restriction."

'It's got to stop': 15 times Obama has pushed for stronger gun control

President Obama signing and executive order to tackle gun control. 
Source: Getty 
Beyond the Core
Let's see what happens when this group of scientists retests studies that contradict climate science
The scientific consensus behind man-made global warming is overwhelming: multiple studies have noted a 97 percent consensus among climate scientists that the Earth is warming and human activities are primarily responsible. But what if all of those scientists are wrong?
Hawaii's Governor Dumps Oil and Gas in Favor of 100 Percent Renewables
At the Asia Pacific Resilience Innovation Summit held in Honolulu, Hawaii, this week, Governor David Ige dropped a bombshell. His administration will not use natural gas to replace the state's petroleum-fueled electricity plants, but will make a full-court press toward 100 percent renewables by 2045.
Political Byte
What's the difference? How women brought wisdom to the Supreme Court
Aug. 26 is Women's Equality Day, the anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment giving women the vote in 1920. As long ago as 1952, pollsters found a gender gap in how men and women vote, and the difference grew to serious proportions starting in 1984. Women first unambiguously determined the winner of a presidential election in 2012. Do women vote differently when they have one of the rarest commodities in American politics, a vote at the Supreme Court?
Read Full Article

Photo credit: Mike Theiler/Reuters

When Congress returns from vacation, budget fight looms
The U.S. Congress will soon embark on a high-stakes budget negotiation with President Barack Obama that, if productive, could give Republicans the increased military spending they want and Democrats the increased domestic spending they seek. Alternatively, the federal government could shut down.
Monaco Prince Asks 'Forgiveness' for Nation's Holocaust Past
Monaco's Prince Albert II apologized Thursday for his country's history of deporting Jews to Nazi concentration camps during the Holocaust. During the period, Monaco police had rounded up and deported Jews in the small principality, including those who escaped to Monaco thinking they would be safe in what was considered a neutral country.

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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.