This past week, the California State Senate passed an importatnt Anti-BDS bill by a vote of 60-0. The Bill will now go to the Governor for signature.
The bill was authored by Assemblyman Richard Bloom along with a myriad of co-authors and in consultation with the Agudath Israel of California. AB 2844 requires any company that accepts a State contract of $100,000 or more to certify that it is not in violation of California Civil Rights law which would include companies involved in an international Israeli boycott. This point is specifically mentioned in the bill’s language as follows: “It is the intent of the Legislature to ensure that taxpayer funds are not used to do business with or otherwise support any state or private entity that engages in discriminatory actions against individuals under the pretext of exercising First Amendment rights. This includes, but is not limited to, discriminatory actions taken against individuals of the Jewish faith under the pretext of a constitutionally protected boycott or protest of the State of Israel.”
According to Agudath Israel of California Chairman, Dr. Irving Lebovics, “This legislation underwent a great deal of amending and discussion before this final product emerged. It was by no means a simple task considering the strong opposition from anti-Israel groups. Assemblyman Bloom deserves credit for his tenacity and leadership that resulted in an important piece of legislation reaching the Governor’s desk.”