Summary

Jeffrey Merkley was born in 1956 and is currently serving as the junior United States Senator from Oregon. Senator Merkley’s seat is up for election in 2020.

Merkley was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008 and was reelected in 2014. Prior to joining the Senate, Merkley served for five terms as member of the Oregon House of Representatives, where he served also as a Speaker from 2007 until 2009. Prior to running for office, Mr. Merkley ran several non-profits in Portland, including Portland Habitat for Humanity.

Senator Merkley is currently serving on the Foreign Relations Committee; the Appropriations Committee; the Environment and Public Works Committee; and the Budget Committee.

Below is Senator Merkley’s voting record and public positions on issues important to the Jewish community. 

Senator Merkley supported the Iran nuclear deal. He voted against the Taylor Force Act in the Foreign Relations Committee but supported the amended version. Senator Merkley did not support the move of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem arguing that the move was seen by the Palestinians as the end of the possibility for the two-state solution.

In 2019, he voted against the Strengthening America’s Middle East Security Act which, among other things, strengthens Israel’s security and allows a state or local government to adopt measures to divest its assets from entities that boycott Israel.

Senator Merkley is a supporter of the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. On June 5th, 2019, he introduced Senate Resolution 234, which reaffirms the commitment of the U.S. to the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and argues that Israeli annexation of territory in the West Bank would undermine peace and Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state. 

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