The Pacific Green Party of Oregon demanded that Senator Ron Wyden withdraw his co-sponsorship of S. 720, the Israel Anti-Boycott Act, and oppose the bill if it comes up for a vote. S. 720 would criminalize anyone advocating a boycott of Israel, with "a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years in prison."
Click continue reading to view the full text of the letter sent by the Pacific Green Party to Senator Wyden on 26th July 2017.
Dear Sen. Wyden:
We are asking you to immediately withdraw your co-sponsorship of S. 720, the Israel Anti-Boycott Act, and oppose it if it comes up for a vote. It would criminalize anyone advocating a boycott of Israel, with "a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years in prison." That would include the Oregon Pacific Green Party, which has long supported the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, all its thousands of Oregon members - your constituents - along with further thousands of Oregonians active in the BDS movement, as well as the US Green Party. Criminalizing a rival political party is the worst possible violation of civil liberties; it is a direct attack on democracy itself, as well as on the Constitution. If officials can imprison members of a rival political party for their beliefs and political actions, we are well on our way to a dictatorship, not a democracy. This is precisely what the Bill of Rights was meant to prevent. Hence, supporting it is a violation of your oath of office.
As the ACLU has confirmed in its letter to every Senator, S. 720 is a clear violation of the right to free speech and association, as well as the right to boycott, affirmed by the Supreme Court. Boycotts were a crucial element in the American independence movement, as well as the Civil Rights movement; they have a long, stellar history in the United States.
Furthermore, S. 720 would subvert the Constitution for the benefit of a foreign government. It is disloyal to the United States. Our hope is that you agreed to co-sponsor a bill you didn't understand.
Again, we are asking you to withdraw your co-sponsorship immediately and announce your opposition to this unconstitutional, anti-democratic bill.
For the Oregon Pacific Green Party:
Members of the State Coordinating Committee:
Alan Zundel - email@example.com
Melissa Wright - firstname.lastname@example.org
Nathalie Paravicini - email@example.com
Seth Woolley - firstname.lastname@example.org
Jacqueline Devaney - email@example.com