Kamala Harris was born in 1964 and is currently serving as the junior United States Senator from California. On December 3, 2019 she announced that she was dropping out of the presidential race. Senator Harris’ seat will be up for election in 2022.
In 2017, Kamala D. Harris was sworn in as a United States Senator for California, the second African-American woman and first South Asian-American senator in history. After earning an undergraduate degree from Howard University and a law degree from the University of California, Hastings, she began her career in the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office. Having completed two terms as the District Attorney of San Francisco, in 2010 Kamala was elected as the first African-American and first woman to serve as California’s Attorney General.
Senator Harris is currently serving on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee; the Budget Committee; the Judiciary Committee; and the Select Committee on Intelligence.
Below is Senator Harris’s voting record and public positions on issues important to the Jewish Community.
In response to Israel’s decision to ban the entry of Democratic Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib, Senator Harris criticized the decision, and tweeted: “I don’t believe any nation should deny entry to elected Members of Congress, period. It’s an affront to the United States. Open and engaged foreign relations are critical to advancing U.S. interests. Trump is playing politics as he weakens our global leadership.”
Senator Harris has been vocal about the dangers of anti-Semitism and has called to not become “complacent in the face of hate and anti-Semitism.”
Although not a Senator at the time and did not vote on it, Harris expressed support for the Iran nuclear deal. She suggested that she would reenter the Iran deal, but added that she “will want to strengthen it, and that will mean extending the sunset provisions, including ballistic missile testing, and also increasing oversight.”
Senator Harris has expressed her support for the State of Israel and argued that Israel should never be a partisan issue. She has condemned anti-Israel bias at the UN and cosponsored legislation that objected to UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which claimed that Israel’s settlements have no legal validity. Senator Harris is a supporter of the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She has opposed the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement and argued that it “seeks to weaken Israel, but it will only isolate the nation and steer Israelis against prerequisite compromises for peace.”
In 2019, she was one of the Democratic Senators who 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. Nevertheless, she stated that she “strongly supports security assistance to strengthen Israel’s ability to defend itself.”
Criticized Israel’s decision to ban Omar and Tlaib: https://twitter.com/KamalaHarris/status/1162052137976811522
Supports Reentering the Iran nuclear deal https://twitter.com/demmaj4israel/status/1181658920424804352
Opposes the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement https://www.jweekly.com/2016/06/03/candidates-for-sen-boxers-open-seat-speak-on-israel-anti-semitism-bds/
Spoke out against anti-Semitism https://www.harris.senate.gov/news/press-releases/harris-on-yom-hashoah-we-must-do-more-to-combat-anti-semitism
Voted Against 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
Opposed UN Security Council Resolution 2334 and supported the two-state solution https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-resolution/6/cosponsors
Position on US security aid to Israel https://www.jta.org/2019/02/07/politics/why-these-democratic-presidential-hopefuls-voted-no-on-an-anti-bds-bill
Cosponsored the United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2018 https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2497/cosponsors