This year at National Council of Jewish Women’s Washington Institute, April 4–7 in our nation’s capital, we will be advocating on four key issues: 

  • The integrity of judicial nominations. The Senate is confirming federal judges at a rapid pace, thus shaping the judiciary for decades to come. The individuals nominated by President Trump and confirmed by the Senate are mostly partisan ideologues with right-wing agendas—not impartial arbiters committed to upholding constitutional rights for all. The Senate must enforce important procedural safeguards meant to protect the independence of the judiciary. 

  • Gun violence prevention bills that would enhance the background check system by requiring a background check on almost every gun sale or transfer, as well as providing additional time to allow a background check to be completed (beyond three days) before a firearm sale. 

  • The Voting Rights Advancement Act (VRAA, HR 4/S 561) seeks to restore the 1965 Voting Rights Act (VRA) to its former strength after being gutted by the 2013 Shelby County v. Holder US Supreme Court decision. The bill would create a new coverage formula to determine which jurisdictions with repeated voting rights violations over the last 25 years must pre-clear election changes with the Department of Justice. 

  • The EACH Woman Act (soon to be introduced in the House and Senate) would end the Hyde Amendment and related restrictions, denying abortion coverage for women enrolled in federal health programs. The bill would also bar local, state, and federal political interference in the decisions of private health insurers to offer abortion coverage.

For more information on these and other issues, visit NCJW.org.

Lesley Frost, Advocacy Chair