Connect with us

Indiana

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signs proclamation condemning antisemitism while vetoing bill defining it

Published

on

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signs proclamation condemning antisemitism while vetoing bill defining it


INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb vetoed a bill Monday that would have defined antisemitism in state education code while simultaneously signing a proclamation condemning all forms of antisemitism.

The Republican governor cited changes made to the bill in the final days of the legislative session in a news release. Aimed at addressing antisemitism on college campuses, the bill’s opponents argued that early versions of it would penalize people for criticizing Israel.

Disagreements between lawmakers in the Republican-controlled state House and Senate threatened to kill the bill before reaching a compromise in the final hours of the legislative session on March 8.

This is the second time the state House has tried to pass the legislation; an identical bill died last year after failing to reach a committee hearing in the state Senate.

Advertisement

Around the country, similar legislation rose to prominence this session amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

The proposal would broadly define antisemitism as religious discrimination, claiming it would “provide educational opportunities free of religious discrimination.”

Defined in 2016 by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, antisemitism is “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

The original House bill used the organization’s definition, which its author has since warned against using in law. It also included “contemporary examples of antisemitism” provided by the group, which make explicit references to Israel. These have been adopted by the U.S. Department of State and under former President Donald Trump, through executive order.

Over 30 states have adopted the definition in some way either through proclamation, executive order or legislation.

Advertisement

State senators, however, passed an amended version of the bill earlier this month that still included the IHRA’s broad definition of antisemitism but deleted the group’s name and examples that include explicit references to Israel. Opponents including the Indiana Muslim Advocacy Network and Jewish Voice for Peace Indiana had argued that such direct references would stifle criticism of Israel in academic settings and activism on campuses in support of Palestinians facing a worsening humanitarian crisis and widespread starvation.

The disagreement between the chambers prompted the bill to go to conference committee, a body consisting of lawmakers from both chambers. The committee reached an agreement on the last day of the legislative session to add the IHRA attribution back to the bill but remove the clause with examples. The final version was approved in both chambers with bipartisan support.

“The language that emerged in the final days of the legislative session fails to incorporate the entire International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition and its important contemporary examples,” Holcomb said about vetoing the bill. “Additionally, the confusing language included in the bill could be read to exclude those examples.”

The Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) said the group supported the final version of the bill after it passed, as did the Indiana Muslim Advocacy Network, which was opposed to the original version over concerns about academic freedom and advocacy.

Holcomb’s support wasn’t clear after its passage. Last week, he expressed concern that Indiana would be an “outlier” among other states thanks to the changes and said he wanted to ensure there is no “ambiguity” in Indiana law.

Advertisement

Republican Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita called on Holcomb to veto the bill, saying it is “toothless” without the mention of the examples.

Holcomb’s proclamation condemning antisemitism cites the IHRA definition and its examples. In a statement, Holcomb said the proclamation “ensures we join numerous states and countries by supporting the entire IHRA definition with its inextricable examples.”

The JCRC thanked Holcomb in a statement for his “thoughtful” consideration of “the concerns raised in recent days by national experts and the Attorney General.”

The group said it will work closely with lawmakers and the state to “ensure that the guidance of Governor Holcomb’s proclamation is correctly applied to identify and confront antisemitism and meet the needs of Jewish students in K-12 and higher educational settings.”

Holcomb has not vetoed a bill since 2022. Lawmakers can easily overturn a veto in Indiana and only need a simple majority to do so. It’s unclear though if or when lawmakers might reconvene.

Advertisement

The push to define antisemitism in numerous states predates the Oct. 7 attacks in which Hamas killed some 1,200 people, mostly civilians, sparking a war that has killed more than 31,000 Palestinians. But the war gave supporters of the push another motivation. This year, governors in Arkansas, Georgia and South Dakota signed measures and a proposal is still awaiting gubernatorial review in Florida.



Source link

Indiana

Indiana State Teachers Association endorses Jennifer McCormick for governor

Published

on

Indiana State Teachers Association endorses Jennifer McCormick for governor


FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) – Former State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jennifer McCormick has accepted an endorsement from the Indiana State Teachers Association in her bid for governor.

McCormick, a former Republican now running as a Democrat, gave the following statement on the endorsement:

“As an educator and the last elected State Superintendent of Public Instruction, I am honored to receive the endorsement of Indiana’s largest teachers’ union, the Indiana State Teachers Association. The support and confidence shown by this endorsement is humbling. This endorsement is a symbol of unity in advocacy, the power of inclusive and collaborative bipartisan leadership, and an unwavering commitment to empowering all Indiana teachers and students. Together, we will strive for excellence in education pushing back against attacks on teachers and public education and working to advance good educational policies while respecting teachers,” said Jennifer McCormick. “Hoosiers deserve a governor who will champion for kids, prioritize education, and recognize the vital role of our teachers. The future of Indiana’s economy and workforce, the health of our communities, and the opportunities afforded to our kids are at stake. Together we can build a future where every voice is heard, every person is valued, and every opportunity is within reach.”

In a press release on the endorsement, McCormick said she fought to take politics out of the classroom as state superintendent and to ensure all students had access to the best possible education. But, she said, “the supermajority extremists in our statehouse continue to focus on issues that don’t help educators, students, or their families.”

To be the first to get the latest breaking news alerts, download the 21Alive News App.

Advertisement

Download for both iPhone and Android devices can be found here.



Source link

Continue Reading

Indiana

U.S. News & World Report names Indiana’s top high schools. Which ones made the list?

Published

on

U.S. News & World Report names Indiana’s top high schools. Which ones made the list?


U.S. News & World Report has released its ranking of the country’s top high schools, and nearly 400 Indiana schools made the rankings.

To determine its top schools, U.S. News & World Report pulled information from statewide standardized testing results, graduation rates, College Board and International Baccalaureate exam data and the U.S. Department of Education’s Common Core of Data.

In its review of about 25,000 public schools, 395 Indiana schools made the rankings. The top-ranked schools were found to have a high rate of students who scored above the average in math, science and reading assessments, passed college-level exams and graduated in four years.

Advertisement

Trending: High school prom tickets aren’t cheap, but they’re paying for more than a gym with balloons

Best Indiana high schools

Here are the Top 10 Indiana high schools, according to U.S. News & World Report:

  1. Signature School (Evansville)
  2. The Indiana Academy (Muncie)
  3. West Lafayette Jr./Sr. High School
  4. Zionsville Community High School
  5. Herron High School (Indianapolis)
  6. Carmel High School
  7. Speedway Senior High School
  8. Westfield High School
  9. Munster High School
  10. Fishers High School

Best Indianapolis area high schools

The site also broke down the best schools in some of the state’s largest metropolitan areas. Here are the Top 10 high schools in the Indianapolis metro area, according to U.S. News & World Report:

  1. Zionsville Community High School
  2. Herron High School
  3. Carmel High School
  4. Speedway Senior High School
  5. Westfield High School
  6. Fishers High School
  7. Hamilton Southeastern High School
  8. Avon High School
  9. Brownsburg High School
  10. Noblesville High School

Contact IndyStar newsroom development director Holly Hays at holly.hays@indystar.com. Follow her on X/Twitter: @hollyvhays





Source link

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Indiana

Here’s who is running against Spartz and Goodrich in Indiana’s 5th Congressional District

Published

on

Here’s who is running against Spartz and Goodrich in Indiana’s 5th Congressional District


It might not seem like it, but Hoosier voters across Indiana’s 5th Congressional District have nine candidates to choose from in the Republican primary election just weeks away. 

Much of the Republican race for the 5th District has centered on incumbent U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz, who turned the primary upside down in February when she reversed her 2023 decision to not seek reelection. Spartz was first elected in 2020 to represent the 5th Congressional District, which stretches from Hamilton County north to Grant County.

Since February, internal polling from both campaigns shows the race appears to be a battle between Spartz and Noblesville state Rep. Chuck Goodrich, who has led the entire field in fundraising with million-dollar personal donations to his campaign. The two have gone head-to-head in attack ads this election cycle with Goodrich’s campaign attacking Spartz’s previous support for aide to Ukraine while Spartz has claimed Goodrich “puts China first.” 

Advertisement

5th District GOP primary: U.S. Rep. Victoria Spartz has an uphill climb to reelection amid massive campaign cash gap

But while Spartz and Goodrich take swipes at each other, there are seven other candidates also fighting for Republican votes. The winner of the primary will face either Ryan Pfenninger or Deborah Pickett who are competing in the Democratic primary next month.

Here is what you need to know about the Republicans running in the 5th Congressional District primary on May 7. (IndyStar has listed the candidates alphabetically based on their last name.)

Raju Chinthala

Advertisement

Home: Carmel

Occupation: speech pathologist, founder and president of the Indiana India Business Council

Campaign Website: rajuforcongress.com

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Chinthala has raised $274,000 and spent just under $45,000.

Notable: Chinthala, who was born in India, was endorsed earlier this year by former Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard, who led the city for nearly three decades.

Advertisement

Max Engling

Home: Cicero, but currently lives in Fishers.

Occupation: Full-time candidate

Campaign Website: maxforindiana.com

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Engling has raised just over $200,000 this election cycle and spent about $125,000.

Advertisement

Notable: Engling previously worked in Washington D.C. in the role of director of member services for former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who was ousted from the chamber’s leadership role in October 2023.

Chuck Goodrich

Home: Noblesville

Occupation: State Representative, CEO of Gaylor Electric

Campaign Website: gowithchuckgoodrich.com

Advertisement

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Goodrich has raised $3.4 million and spent $3 million this election cycle. Goodrich has donated $2.6 million to his campaign.

Notable: Goodrich, who is the CEO of Gaylor Electric, started as an intern at the company in the early 1990s. Goodrich’s leadership role with the company and at the Statehouse has been a conduit for the state representative to carry bills tied to apprenticeships and work-based learning, part of a movement in state government to prepare students for career paths beyond higher education degrees. While those bills have been celebrated, there remain questions from some groups, such as the Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute, about additional funding and resources needed for such programs to actually be successful.

Mark Hurt 

Home: Kokomo

Occupation: Lawyer

Advertisement

Campaign Website: markhurt.org

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Hurt has raised about $147,000 and spent just under $120,000 this election cycle.

Notable: According to his campaign website, Hurt has worked on health care policy for politicians such as former Iowa Congressman Fred Grandy, former Michigan Gov. John Engler and former U.S. Senator Dan Coats, an Indiana senator who served as the director of National Intelligence from 2017 to 2019 in the Trump administration.

Patrick Malayter

Home: McCordsville

Advertisement

Occupation: Former accountant and consultant to accounting firms

Campaign Website: patrickmforcongress.com

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Malayter has raised $6,700 and spent no money yet this election cycle.

Notable: Maylayter’s key issue on the campaign trail has been establishing term limits for members of Congress. According to his campaign website, Malayter believes there should be eight-year limits on how long federally elected officials can serve in Washington D.C.

Matthew Peiffer

Advertisement

Home: Muncie

Occupation: President of A Voice for Kids, a foster children advocacy nonprofit

Campaign Website: Peiffer does not have a campaign website, but posts about his involvement in the community on Facebook at the page Muncies Smile Man.

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Peiffer has not raised or spent any money this election cycle.

Notable: Peiffer is a former foster child and has told media outlets he does not expect to win the primary election. At a League of Women Voters forum in Anderson in early April, Peiffer said he threw his hat into the race to make people more aware of issues he believes actually affect everyday Hoosiers, including mental health care for children in foster care systems and insurance for living donors.

Advertisement

LD Powell

Home: Carmel

Occupation: Businessman

Campaign Website: ldpowellforcongress.com

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Powell has raised just under $39,000 and spent about $35,000 this election cycle. Powell donated $35,000 to his campaign.

Advertisement

Notable: Powell is the only veteran in the Republican primary. He served in the U.S. Navy and is also a certified flight instructor.

Larry L. Savage Jr.

Home: Anderson

Occupation: Property management

Campaign Website: Savage does not have a campaign website but is posting about the election on the Facebook page Larry Savage for U.S. Congress Indiana District5.

Advertisement

Money raised/spent: There are no federal campaign finance reports for Savage’s campaign.

Notable: Savage describes himself as a “grassroots guy” and calls himself the “MAGA candidate” on his campaign Facebook page. Savage said he is pro-marijuana legalization and knows people that need access to marijuana to deal with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Victoria Spartz

Home: Carmel

Occupation: U.S. Representative for Indiana’s 5th Congressional District

Advertisement

Campaign Website: spartzforcongress.com

Money raised/spent: Per federal campaign finance reports, Spartz has raised $358,000 and spent $133,000 since rejoining the 5th District primary in February.

Notable: Spartz grew up in Ukraine and immigrated to the U.S. in 2000 after meeting her husband. Spartz has drawn headlines about her ties to the country since February 2022 when Russia further invaded Ukraine, from an emotional press conference in March 2022 condemning violence from Russia to criticism of Ukrainian leaders. Spartz voted no on the House’s recent approval of aide to Ukraine that passed the chamber on April 20.

Contact IndyStar’s state government and politics reporter Brittany Carloni at brittany.carloni@indystar.com or 317-779-4468. Follow her on Twitter/X @CarloniBrittany.





Source link

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Trending