Robert Wexler

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Robert Wexler


Robert Wexler was, until 2010, a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing the 19th district of Florida.

Background

Born in Queens, New York, Congressman Wexler moved to South Florida with his family at age 10. He earned his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Florida and law degree from George Washington University. Before serving in Congress, he served in the Florida Senate for six years. Congressman Wexler and his wife, Laurie, have three children.[1]

Martinez Jobs Bill

In November 1997 Robert Wexler of Florida signed on as the 58th co-sponsors of the Communist Party USA inspired Martinez Jobs Bill.[2]

Communist inspired letter to defund Colombian military

Sam Farr had been a Peace Corps volunteer in Colombia, and was contacted by the communist dominated Colombia Support Network in 1997. Efforts by Colombia Support Network were instrumental in getting a letter sent to Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, with the 19 other members signing on. The January 30, 1998 letter called for the continued suspension of funding to the Colombian military then engaged in a bloody civil war against communist guerillas.

Dear Secretary Albright :
We are writing to express our concern with the worsening human rights situation in Colombia and urge you to take steps to address this matter.
News reports and first-hand accounts indicate that violence in Colombia is escalating, particularly in the country's northern most regions and the southern coca growing regions. Many different groups and individuals have been implicated in the violence, but an increasing number of human rights abuses are being instigated by paramilitary groups --armed civilians who torture, evict, kidnap and murder Colombian civilians.
There is also evidence of links between paramilitaries and local drug lords, who rely on paramilitary groups to undertake violent activities on their behalf. The Peasant Self-Defense Group of Cordoba and Uraba, a paramilitary group lead by Carlos Castano, is considered one of the most powerful paramilitary groups in Colombia. Reports indicate that last yeqar Castano's group killed hundreds, if not more than a thousand, peasants it accused of helping rebels.

As concerned Members of Congress, we urge you to place the issue of human rights and the problem of paramilitary groups in the forefront of your priority list in your dealings with Colombia. We understand that aid to the Colombian army is currently on hold because of human rights concerns and urge you to continue to withhold funding.

Signatories were;Sam Farr, John Porter, Ron Dellums, David Bonior, Marty Meehan, Marcy Kaptur, Scott Klug, James McGovern, Elizabeth Furse, Jim Oberstar, Peter DeFazio, Maurice Hinchey, Gerald Kleczka,John Conyers, Pete Stark, Robert Wexler, Lucille Roybal-Allard, Lane Evans, David Price, Sherrod Brown, [3]

2006 letter to Condoleezza Rice on Colombia

Alleged Colombian Army killings prompted Fellowship of Reconciliation to work with Representative Sam Farr to forge a response that would impact the 17th Brigade, the unit allegedly responsible for the violence against San José de Apartadó and communities throughout northwestern Colombia.

As a result, Reps. Sam Farr and Jim McGovern, wrote a letter to their colleagues in Congress urging them to join in calling on Secretary Condoleezza Rice to cut funding for the Colombian military.

Letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
(Deadline for Congressional representatives to sign: February 22)
We applaud the decision, noted in your certification letter of August 2005, that the US "will not consider providing assistance to the 17th Brigade until all significant human rights allegations involving the unit have been credibly addressed." Because the Brigade is a component of the Colombian Armed Forces' command structure and has been implicated in the above referenced human rights violations, we implore you to abide by both the letter of the law and the spirit of the law by withholding human rights certification for Colombia until the following conditions are met:

Signatories included Robert Wexler.[4]

Congressional Progressive Caucus

As of February 20 2009 Robert Wexler was listed as a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.[5]

"Impeach Cheney"

In January 2008, nine out of 23 Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee favor starting impeachment hearings against Vice-President Dick Cheney. Six of the nine are co-sponsors of H.R. 799, which contains three articles of impeachment. The nine Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee who favored impeachment hearings were: Robert Wexler, Fla.; Luis Gutierrez, Ill.; Anthony Weiner, N.Y.; Tammy Baldwin, Wisc.; Sheila Jackson-Lee, Texas; Steve Cohen, Tenn.; Keith Ellison, Minn.; Maxine Waters, Calif.; and Hank Johnson, Ga.[6]

Defending ACORN

In 2009, the scandal over the undercover videos prompted a September vote in the House to follow the Senate and vote on an amendment denying funding to ACORN. The vote, on a provision attached to a student aid bill, was 345-75, with Democrats supplying all the “no” votes.

Florida Democrats voting no included Robert Wexler of Boca Raton, Kathy Castor of Tampa and Corrine Brown of Jacksonville.[7]

Pro-Israel

Throughout his tenure in Congress, Congressman Wexler has been an outspoken advocate for the "unbreakable bond" between the United States and Israel, and a leading proponent of Israel's right to self-defense and the need for a just and comprehensive resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict. He has traveled on numerous congressional delegations to the Middle East and met with the leaders of Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Kuwait, Turkey, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Morocco, and Oman. At President Clinton's invitation, he was the only member of the House of Representatives present during the signing of the Wye River Peace Agreement. In addition, Wexler was one of two Congressmen to travel to the International Court of Justice at the Hague to oppose the Palestinian case against Israel's construction of a security barrier.

Robert Wexler is the President of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace. He served as a Democratic member of Congress for seven terms, representing Florida's 19th district in the U.S. House of Representatives before retiring in January 2010 to lead the Center. Wexler was named one of the "50 Most Effective Legislators in Congress" by Congressional Quarterly and in 2008 was named to the Forward 50 list as one of the most influential leaders in the American Jewish community. In 2008, Congressman Wexler served as an advisor on Middle East and Israel issues to President Barack Obama during his presidential campaign.[8].

J Sreet endorsement

In 2008 Wexler was endorsed by JStreet PAC.[9]

External links

References