update deskU.S. News

House passes a dozen pro-Israel, anti-Iran bills days after missile attack

Congress passed a resolution this week declaring that the phrase “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” is antisemitic.

U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Credit: Andrea Izzotti/Shutterstock.
U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Credit: Andrea Izzotti/Shutterstock.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a dozen pro-Israel and anti-Iran bills and resolutions this week, in the wake of the Islamic Republic’s missile attack against the Jewish state on Saturday.

Lawmakers passed two bills on Monday that target Iran’s finances and a third that would deny tax-exempt status to U.S. charities that fund foreign terrorist organizations.

The House passed nine bills and resolutions on Tuesday designed to support the Jewish state and combat Iran. 

Most of the bills passed overwhelmingly, facing opposition only from members of the so-called “Squad” of left-wing Democrats and other members of the Progressive caucus. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), a libertarian who typically opposes all foreign policy legislation, was the lone Republican ‘nay’ vote on each bill except the Illicit Captagon Trafficking Suppression Act, where he was joined by Reps. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) and Matt Rosendale (R-Mont.).

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) stated on Tuesday that the flurry of legislation was “designed purposefully to increase the likelihood of a deadly regional war or worse.”

“The Republican Majority is explicitly leveraging a series of bills to further escalate tensions in the Middle East,” she said. “I will oppose any cynical effort to further inflame tensions, destroy a path to peace in the region and further divide the American people.

The most divisive of the dozen was the “No U.S. Financing for Iran Act,” which passed the House 294-105 on Monday, splitting the Democratic caucus. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) was one of 104 Democrats who voted against the bill. (Massie was the other “nay” vote.)

The measure would restrict the U.S. Treasury Department, Export-Import Bank of the United States and the International Monetary Fund from conducting certain transactions related to Iran. 

Opponents of the bill said that the legislation would have unintended consequences for international development financing and would place unnecessary scrutiny on U.S. businesses in their transactions with the Export-Import Bank.

The House also passed a resolution on Tuesday declaring that the phrase “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” is antisemitic, by a vote of 377-44.

The house majority jeader’s weekly schedule lists five other pro-Israel and anti-Iran bills that have yet to be voted upon. 

That list does not include the supplemental foreign aid package for Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan, which Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-La.) has said he will put forward later this week as separate bills.

It’s not clear whether the Democratic-controlled Senate will take up the House legislation passed on Monday and Tuesday. Unless the bills secure unanimous consent, they would likely take weeks to vote on in the upper chamber.

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