The House approved a resolution Thursday condemning the support of Hamas, Hezbollah and other terrorist organizations at higher education institutions, a rebuke of the uproar that has taken place at college campuses in the wake of Hamas’s attack on Israel last month.
The resolution — which the chamber cleared in a 396-23 vote — took aim at colleges that have been embroiled in controversy over responses to the Israel-Hamas war, declaring that the support of Hamas and Hezbollah on campuses “may lead to the creation of a hostile environment for Jewish students, faculty, and staff.”
It also calls on campus administrators to condemn antisemitism on college campuses; ensure Jewish faculty, students and guests are able to exercise free speech rights guaranteed to others without intimidation; and urges the enforcement of federal civil rights laws meant to protect Jewish students.
“Today, the People’s House sent a clear message to the nation: We firmly reject evil, we strongly support Israel, and we will root out the rotten ideologies found in our higher education system,” Rep. Burgess Owens (R-Utah), the sponsor of the resolution, wrote in a statement Thursday.
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) was the lone Republican to vote against the resolution. He was joined by 22 Democrats, a handful of whom are members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
The legislation lists a number of examples across multiple campuses where either professors or students expressed support for Hamas, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization, after it launched its attack on Israel on Oct. 7.
One instance took place at The George Washington University, where pro-Palestine students illuminated on the side of the library messages that said “Free Palestine from the River to the Sea” and “Glory to our Martyrs.”
During a pro-Palestinian rally at Cornell University, a professor said he was “exhilarated” by Hamas’s attack on Israel and declared that “Hamas has challenged the monopoly of violence,” according to The Cornell Daily Sun. The professor, Russell Rickford, later apologized in a statement “for the horrible choice of words that I used in a portion of a speech that was intended to stress grassroots African American, Jewish and Palestinian traditions of resistance to oppression.”
The resolution also noted that one of the most prominent pro-Palestine groups on campus, Students for Justice in Palestine, released a statement calling for a “day of resistance.”
Rep. Kathy Manning (D-N.C.), who is Jewish, slammed the antisemitism that has been seen on college campuses amid the war between Israel and Hamas.
“Antisemitism is a persistent, shape-shifting hatred that is an affront to our values as Americans. It should be condemned by all. It has no place on college campuses and universities or in our society,” she said during debate on the House floor Wednesday.
“When antisemitism and bias against Jews takes hold on campus, it deprives students of their equal right to an education and it harms everyone in the campus community,” she later added.
Tensions have been running high at campuses as a rise in antisemitism and anti-Muslim sentiments have grown.
On Tuesday, authorities arrested a Cornell University junior and charged him with “posting threats to kill or injure another using interstate communication” after he allegedly posted a threat to open fire at a Kosher dining hall on campus.
The resolution condemning the support of Hamas and Hezbollah on college campuses is one of a number of pieces of legislation the House has approved in the wake of the war in the Middle East, and under the leadership of newly minted Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.).
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This story originally Appeared on The Hill