Dems want to block pro-Israel bill over Trump shutdown
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Dems want to block pro-Israel bill over Trump shutdown

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer and other Senate Democratic leaders are behind the effort, according to a report by Washington Examiner on Monday. The bill is aimed at “allowing state and local governments to divest from entities that boycott, divest from, or sanction Israel because of its occupation of the West Bank.” The upper chamber of US Congress is set late Tuesday to hold a procedural vote on the bill against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. The BDS movement was initiated in 2005 by over 170 Palestinian organizations to initiate “various forms of boycott against Israel until it meets its obligations under international law.” The BDS is gaining momentum in the United States and poses a serious threat to Israel’s “hegemonic power” in Washington, according to Myles Hoenig, a political activist based in Maryland. Schumer is reportedly joining Maryland Democratic Senator Ben Cardin, a top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee, to vote against moving the bill forward. The two senators were themselves among the cosponsors of the bill as it was introduced in 2017. The move is reportedly in protest to the government shutdown by Democrats, who are demanding that Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell facilitate reopening of nine agencies and departments closed over government shutdown. Funding for the wall has led to a budget impasse, causing the ongoing partial government shutdown. Trump demands $5 billion, for which he is "proud" to shut down the government but Democrats are not offering more than $1.3 billion. The Republican president has been calling for a wall along the southern border since his 2016 presidential campaign, pledging that Mexico would pay for it.

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