Summary

John Cornyn was born in 1952 and is currently serving as the senior United States Senator from Texas. Senator Cornyn’s seat is up for election in 2020.

Cornyn was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 2002 and was reelected in 2008 and 2014. Cornyn was previously the Chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee from 2007 until 2011 and the Republican Senate Whip, the second-highest ranking position in the Senate Republican Conference, from 2013 until 2019. Prior to joining the Senate, Cornyn served as the Attorney General of Texas from 1990 until 2002.

Senator Cornyn is currently serving on the Finance Committee; the Judiciary Committee; and the Select Committee on Intelligence.

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

Senator Cornyn opposed the Iran nuclear deal, arguing that it “abandoned longstanding U.S. policy to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon in favor of one that merely delayed it.” Senator Cornyn supported the move of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem. He cosponsored a Senate Resolution that objected to the UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which claimed that Israel’s settlements have no legal validity.

Senator Cornyn opposes the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and he cosponsored the Israel Anti-Boycott Act and the Combating BDS Act of 2017, legislations that aimed to fight discriminatory boycotts that target Israel. He supported the Taylor Force Act, which states that no American governmental funds shall be given to a Palestinian entity that financially rewards terrorists or their families.

In 2018, he cosponsored the United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act, a legislation that supported full funding of security assistance to Israel as outlined in the 2016 U.S.-Israel Memorandum of Understanding. In 2019, Senator Cornyn voted for 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. In June 2019, Senator Cornyn cosponsored a resolution that opposes the global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and the delegitimization of Israel.

Senator Cornyn is a cosponsor of the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act of 2019, which aims to provide for the consideration of a definition of anti-Semitism for the enforcement of Federal antidiscrimination laws concerning education programs or activities. 

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SOURCES

Opposed the Iran nuclear deal https://www.cornyn.senate.gov/content/cornyn-statement-announced-nuclear-deal-iran

Voted For the Strengthening America’s Middle East Security Act of 2019 https://www.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=116&session=1&vote=00016 

Cosponsored the Israel Anti-Boycott Act https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/720/cosponsors

Cosponsored the Combating BDS Act of 2017 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/170/cosponsors

Cosponsored the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act of 2019 https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/852/cosponsors

Opposed UN Security Council Resolution 2334 and supported the two-state solution https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-resolution/6/cosponsors

Cosponsored the Taylor Force Act https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/1697/cosponsors

Cosponsored the United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2018 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2497/cosponsors

Cosponsored Senate Resolution 120 that opposes the global BDS movement https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-resolution/120