March 4, 2015
Minneapolis, MN – Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC), issued the following statement applauding the Minnesota State Board of Investment’s decision to reaffirm Minnesota’s purchase of Israel bonds:
“The Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) applauds today’s decision by the Minnesota State Board of Investment to reaffirm Minnesota’s purchase of Israel bonds. The JCRC also applauds Governor Mark Dayton’s leadership in connection with the State Board of Investment’s decision.
“I had the opportunity to testify at the State Board of Investment’s meeting today to advocate for the reaffirmation of Minnesota’s purchase of Israel bonds. Minnesota’s long standing investment in Israel bonds dates back to 1993. The state’s support for Israel and its investment in Israel bonds is bipartisan and has been supported by successive governors from Governor Arne Carlson to Governor Mark Dayton.
“Fortunately, attempts to divest from Israel have previously been rejected by the State Board of Investment, Minnesota’s Court of Appeals, Minnesota’s State Legislature, and Minnesota’s DFL and Republican parties.
“Judging by recent opinion polls, the American people are standing with Israel and Minnesota’s bipartisan support for Israel extends back in time even before the creation of the State of Israel in 1948.
“Israel has an unblemished record for meeting its bond obligations underscoring the fact that Israel’s economy, like Minnesota’s, is a per capita international leader in medicine, technology, and agriculture.
“The JCRC also thanks Attorney General Lori Swanson and Secretary of State Steve Simon for their support.”
Steve Hunegs and Walid Issa, co-founder and U.S. director for the Shades Negotiation Program, authored a commentary today for MinnPost.com discussing the importance of investing in the Israeli and Palestinian economies. Here is a link to the commentary: http://www.minnpost.com/community-voices/2015/03/invest-peace-not-division-minnesota-should-renew-its-holdings-israel-bonds.
As the public affairs voice of the Jewish community, the JCRC fights anti-Semitism and prejudice, advocates for Israel, provides Holocaust education, promotes tolerance and social justice, and builds bridges across the Jewish and broader communities.