Skip to content

Ranking Member Cassidy Leads Bipartisan Roundtable on Rising Antisemitism on College Campuses

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, led a bipartisan roundtable looking into the rising rates of anti-Semitic harassment and violence on colleges campuses. Cassidy was joined by U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Ted Budd (R-NC), Bob Casey (D-PA), Susan Collins (R-ME), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), Mitt Romney (R-UT), and Tommy Tuberville (R-AL). 

Since Hamas’ terrorist attacks on Israel, there has been a disturbing rise in anti-Semitic incidents directed at Jewish students on college campuses, including a Jewish student’s dorm room door set on fire at Drexel University and swastikas drawn on dorm room doors and in bathrooms where Jewish students live at American University. During the roundtable, the senators and panelists discussed the Biden administration’s legal responsibility to protect Jewish students from discrimination under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

“Since the Hamas-led massacre against Israel last month, there has been a disturbing rise in anti-Semitic incidents directed at Jewish students on college campuses, including targeted harassment and violent attacks,” said Dr. Cassidy. “It’s not only students that are perpetrating these incidents. It’s also the teachers who are tasked with ensuring students’ academic success.” 

“The threats and violence against Jewish and Israeli students are despicable. No student should be afraid to go to school,” continued Dr. Cassidy.  

“The outrage to these recent events should be unanimous. There are no grounds for a nuanced response when a student is harassed or attacked on their way to class just because of who they are,” continued Dr. Cassidy. “There is no justification, no sliding scale of tolerance for bigotry and racism. It is wrong full stop, period, end of sentence.” 

“As the lead Committee tasked with overseeing the Department of Education, it is our responsibility to understand the true severity of this trend and ensure the Department holds these taxpayer-funded institutions accountable for properly handling these events and not condoning discrimination on their campus,” continued Dr. Cassidy

The panelists of today’s roundtable include:

  • Julia Steinberg, student at Stanford University
  • Eli Shmidman, law student at Columbia University
  • Jonathan Sarna, Professor of American Jewish History and Director of the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University
  • Kenneth Marcus, Chairman and Founder, Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law
  • Rabbi Yudi Steiner, Executive Director of the Rohr Chabad Center located at The George Washington University

Click here to watch the full roundtable.   

Last week, Cassidy and U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Mike Braun (R-IN), Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), and Ted Budd (R-NC) urged HELP Committee Chair Bernie Sanders (I-VT) to hold a full HELP hearing on this issue. 

Additionally, Cassidy urged the Biden administration to use its enforcement power under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to ensure colleges and universities uphold their responsibilities to maintain a safe learning environment for Jewish students. While the administration has since announced new efforts to address anti-Semitism on campuses, it does nothing to ensure colleges are responsibly handling these events and working to prevent them in the first place. 


For all news and updates from HELP Republicans, visit our website or Twitter at @GOPHELP.