Skip To Content
Get Our Newsletter

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe

Jewish Republican Introduces Bill To ‘Combat Anti-Semitism’

David Kustoff, one of two Republican Jews in the House, is pushing a bill to slap heavier penalties and an automatic hate crime designation on those who threaten religious buildings, following March’s spate of bomb threats against Jewish community centers.

“Frankly, it wouldn’t matter what my religion is,” Kustoff, a freshman congressman from western Tennessee, told the Knoxville News-Sentinel. “The government has to send a message that these threats and these actions won’t be tolerated, and they will be prosecuted. If someone breaks the law, they can go to prison for a long time.”

The Combating Anti-Semitism Act, co-sponsored with Washington Democrat Derek Kilmer, would reclassify threatening a religious center, previously a misdemeanor, as a felony with a prison sentence of up to five years. The Anti-Defamation League has endorsed the measure.

Kustoff served as a federal prosecutor under former President George W. Bush, and he lives with his wife and children in the city of Memphis. Lee Zeldin is the House’s other Jewish Republican – he represents New York’s Long Island.

Contact Daniel J. Solomon at or on Twitter @DanielJSolomon




Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free under an Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives Creative Commons license as long as you follow our republishing guidelines, which require that you credit Foward and retain our pixel. See our full guidelines for more information.

To republish, copy the HTML, which includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline, and credit to Foward. Have questions? Please email us at

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.