Oklahoma enacts anti-BDS legislation

Conference of Presidents welcomes Oklahoma's move to enact a measure to combat the anti-Israel BDS movement.

Elad Benari ,

BDS activists
BDS activists
iStock

Oklahoma has become the 30th state to enact a measure to combat the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

According to JNS, the Oklahoma House passed the bill, 75-20, back in March. Gov. Kevin Stitt, a Republican, signed it into law on May 22.

The legislation declares that Israel is one of Oklahoma’s largest trading partner and is a staunch US ally and it prohibits the state government from entering into contracts with entities that boycott the Jewish state, exempting contracts under $100,000.

The new law requires the contractor to submit written verification that it is not partaking in the boycott.

Stitt posted a Twitter video announcing his signing of the bill.

“This bill just lets everybody know that Oklahoma stands with Israel, and we will not do business with companies that boycott the country of Israel,” he said.

The leaders of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations welcomed the new legislation in a statement on Tuesday.

"We welcome Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt's signing of legislation that prohibits Oklahoma from contracting with companies that boycott Israel. Oklahoma is the 30th state to take action against the discriminatory antisemitic, anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) initiatives, closely following Missouri which became the 29th state to do so earlier this month. We look forward to the remaining states rejecting the pernicious BDS campaign in the days ahead," said Arthur Stark, Chairman, William Daroff, CEO, and Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chair of the Conference of Presidents.

Other states to have passed anti-BDS legislation include Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.

Arizona announced last year that it would ease its rules to a state ban on doing business with companies that boycott Israel in an attempt to avoid potential lawsuits.

Texas also amended its anti-BDS law, which bans business with Israel boycotters, after the application of the law was vexed by embarrassing incidents and at least one lawsuit.




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