Anti-BDS legislation update: California, Ohio, and Georgia

Palestine Legal continues to track anti-BDS legislation across the country. We regularly update legal resources and action items at www.RightToBoycott.org.

California

 Click here to visit www.RightToBoycott.org

Click here to visit www.RightToBoycott.org

Last week, members of the California Assembly’s Accountability and Administrative Review Committee voted to advance AB 2844, a bill that would prohibit California from doing business with companies that boycott Israel. The Judiciary Committee will consider AB 2844 tomorrow.  [4/19 update: the Judiciary Committee voted to pass the bill out of committee with amendments. Further updates coming soon.] 

A legal analysis released today by the Judiciary Committee stated that as written, AB 2844 would infringe on the First Amendment right to boycott, and recommended revisions that would apply only to “discriminatory business practices" in furtherance of boycotts.  Palestine Legal interprets this as an affirmation of the unconstitutionality of the vast majority of anti-BDS legislation, and believes that such a prohibition on discriminatory boycotts would not apply to BDS campaigns, which do not target companies based on their national origin or other protected status, but because of human rights violations.  

Learn more about the bill, and take action here.

Ohio

Today, Palestine Legal, Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), and National Lawyers Guild of Ohio sent a letter to lawmakers in Ohio outlining legal concerns with HB 476, an anti-BDS bill that would unconstitutionally prohibit the state from contracting with businesses that boycott Israel or disinvest from Israel as an “expression of protest against the policies of the government of Israel.”

Click here to share the letter with your lawmaker in Ohio.

Georgia

Also today, Palestine Legal and CCR wrote to Georgia Governor Nathan Deal, urging him to veto SB 327 which would prohibit Georgia from contracting with individuals and companies that boycott Israel and “Israeli-controlled territories.”

Click here to view our letter to Gov. Deal.

Media & Upcoming Events

Today, Palestine Legal staff attorney Rahul Saksena spoke about anti-BDS legislation on WBAI’s Law and Disorder Radio. Click here to listen.

On Thursday, Rahul will participate on a panel on anti-BDS legislation at the Palestine Center in Washington, D.C. RSVP here to attend.