News Department

Congressman Kean hosts roundtable combatting antisemitism

BERNARDSVILLE, NJ (Somerset County) – Congressman Tom Kean, Jr. (NJ-07) Monday hosted a roundtable to address the rise of antisemitism in New Jersey and nationwide.

In attendance were Rabbis, Jewish leaders, local elected officials, and high school and college students from New Jersey’s 7th Congressional District.

According to the Antidefamation League, since Hamas’ brutal surprise attack on Israel on October 7th, 2023, the United States saw a 140% increase from 2022 in antisemitic cases.

“There is no place in this world for antisemitism,” Kean said. “It is crucial that all of us – federal, state, and local officials, community leaders, students, and individuals alike, work together to combat the scourge of antisemitism. I thank everyone who came to join me at this roundtable. I look forward to continuing to work with them to ensure the safety of the Jewish community in New Jersey, across the nation and around the globe.”

“There is a Russian expression: ‘Friend is known in trouble,'” said Rabbi Inna Serebro-Litvak. “Since October 7, Congressman Tom Kean Jr. has been an amazing supporter of the Jewish community! Whether voting for the aid for Israel in Congress, urging President Biden to not cut the supply of weapons, crucial in the war with Hamas,  speaking out against antisemitism on college campuses, in particular at Rutgers, or simply providing an opportunity for the Jews of his district and beyond to speak about their concerns, Congressman Kean had been a true friend. On behalf of all of us – thank you!” 

“In these difficult times, as the Jewish community feels threatened and embattled in our campuses and schools, we are grateful for this important dialogue,” said Dov Ben-Shimon, Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest. “As we look back on the past week, with the shameful capitulation of our state university, Rutgers, to performative lawbreakers, and an ever-increasing atmosphere of Jew-hating attacks in New Jersey, these conversations are more important than ever.”

“I would like to thank Congressman Kean for hosting this roundtable to discuss the alarming rise in antisemitism across the country,” said Casey Isser, Westfield High School Student Government President. “As a high school senior about to enter college, these hate crimes have me, along with my Jewish friends and family deeply concerned. I hope that through forums such as this one we can tackle the issue head on and promote the need for education in fighting antisemitism.”

“First of all I’d like to thank the congressman for gathering so many Jewish leaders together in New Jersey 7,” said Robin Freeman Kramer, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of West-Central New Jersey. “He has been a wonderful advocate against hate and in support of our community. It’s reassuring to us to know that we are being represented very well in Washington and we appreciate being heard. For a long time we’ve felt unheard and we have always felt that the Congressman hears us and hears our concerns and cares about the welfare of our community on equal footing with his caring about all other groups in New Jersey 7 so we really appreciate it. Thank you very much.”

“Sincere appreciation to Congressman Tom Kean, Jr. for convening this round table this morning and for caring about what’s happening to Jewish people in the State of New Jersey and across the country and the state of Israel,” said Lisa Harris Glass, CEO of Rutgers Hillel. “He alone is really the one who has given us this kind of time and this kind of forum and we really need our other elected officials to follow his lead because what’s happening needs to be elevated and we appreciate all of his efforts on our behalf.”

“Congressman Kean is one of the few federal elected officials who has exhibited the courage and temerity to advocate for not only the large Jewish community in his district but around the state and I appreciate his efforts on that front,” said Springfield Deputy Mayor, Harris Laufer.”

“At a time when many public officials and candidates are still struggling to define their position and find their voice, Congressman Kean has been crystal clear in his opposition to the scourge of antisemitism,” said Bridgewater Councilman, Michael Kirsh. “His support for Israel and the needs of Jewish people in this county have been unwavering throughout his 20-plus years of public service. It illustrates a solid commitment to making the 7th district, New Jersey, and our nation a better place for everyone to live and flourish.” 

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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