100 Days Newsletter

100 Days Newsletter: Day 16 – February 4, 2021

As we close out the third week of the Biden-Harris administration, a power-sharing agreement has been finalized in the Senate, allowing the Democrats to take control of committees and get to work for the American people. And get to work they did, confirming several of President Biden’s cabinet nominees, starting work on COVID relief, and launching the impeachment trial in the Senate. Thanks to your advocacy, many of NCJW’s priorities continue to take center stage! Read on for our successes and advancements for women, children, and families this past week.

What is it?
Every time a new president takes office, they appoint cabinet nominees and other White House officials to fill critical positions. More than 1,000 of these positions — including cabinet secretaries, agency heads, and ambassadors, among others — require Senate confirmation.

How does it relate to our past work?
NCJW takes positions on nominees where the issue-area impacts our mission. We are particularly interested in the nominees for the Department of Justice, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, and Department of Education.

What can I do now?
A two-week delay without a power-sharing agreement in the Senate means many top government jobs are still without critically needed leadership.

Call your senators (Capitol Switchboard #202-224-3121) using this script:

My name is [x], and I am with National Council of Jewish Women from [city, state]. I urge you to swiftly confirm President Biden’s agency nominees to get the government working for the people again. From protecting our civil rights and health care to addressing immigration and national security, the Senate must immediately confirm the experienced and qualified Biden-Harris nominees.

What is it?
On February 2, President Biden signed several executive orders related to immigration:

How does it relate to our past work?
National Council of Jewish Women strongly opposed the anti-immigrant policies currently under review and advocated to reunite families separated by the nation’s cruel immigration and asylum policies. National Council of Jewish Women St. Louis led a trip to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, to protest immigrant child detention in July 2019. Family separation and detention were also the focus of a series of NCJW-led rallies across the US on Tisha B’Av in August 2019.

What can I do now?
The Biden administration has begun to reframe the nation’s immigration and asylum systems, but there is much more work to do. We encourage the administration to act quickly to provide relief for immigrants in detention, those facing the threat of deportation, and potential asylum seekers trapped in Mexico. Even as the new administration recalibrates its immigration enforcement priorities, the deportation of Black immigrants continues. The administration must address anti-Blackness in its immigration policies. Follow along on Twitter and Facebook for updates.

  • Senate Democrats introduced a resolution on February 2 condemning white supremacists ahead of former President Trump’s impeachment trial. This resolution is the first official measure denouncing the insurrection on January 6. Learn more here.
  • On February 2, the Senate confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas as secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Mayorkas, supported by NCJW, is the first Latino to hold the top job at DHS.
  • On February 4, National Council of Jewish Women sent a letter signed by 36 local, 19 states, and 23 national Jewish organizations supporting H.R. 1, the For the People Act, to the House of Representatives.
  • On February 4, Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced the Dream Act, which would provide a path to citizenship for Dreamers, young immigrants who came to the US as children. NCJW supports this legislation and applauds this step! Read our Policy Statement here.

American Rescue Plan

President Biden is committed to passing his American Rescue Plan as quickly as possible. Congress is moving forward with a reconciliation process, which allows for expedited consideration of certain tax, spending, and debt-limit legislation. While the reconciliation process is complicated, it allows for potentially quicker movement and does not preclude additional COVID relief through the regular legislative process. The goal is to get COVID relief passed by March before extended Unemployment Insurance benefits expire on March 14. NCJW supports the president’s plan to address the urgent needs of women, children, and families. Urge your lawmakers to pass the president’s plan without any harmful amendments!

See the full list of NCJW’s First 100 Day Priorities here.

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