74 members of Congress demand the dismissal of the presidents of Harvard, MIT and UPenn for ‘their antisemitic posture’

Lawmakers, both Republican and Democrat, criticized the responses of Liz Magill, Sally Kornbluth and Claudine Gay during a hearing on antisemitism on campus.

"The world is watching — you can stand with your Jewish students and faculty, or you can choose the side of dangerous antisemitism," warns a letter signed by 74 members of Congress to Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Lawmakers from both parties demanded the dismissal of these institutions’ presidents due to their "abhorrent" words during a hearing on combating antisemitism on college campuses.

"When pushed on whether calling for the genocide of Jews violates university policies on bullying or harassment, Presidents Gay (Harvard), Kornbluth (MIT), and Magill (Penn) were evasive and dismissive, failing to simply condemn such action," they maintained in the Friday letter regarding the appearance of Claudine Gay, from Harvard, Liz Magill, from Penn, and Sally Kornbluth, from MIT, held on Tuesday of last week. They maintain that the only the correct answer would have been "an easy and resounding 'yes.'"

They also criticized the efforts of some of them to rectify what was said, as Gay did in an interview or Magill in a video published on Penn's website. These later clarifications simply "confirmed their opposition to genocide — which should not have required clarification," but did not detail what actions they would take to combat discrimination against Jews.

These desperate attempts to try and save their jobs by condemning genocide are too little too late. It should not take public backlash nor 24 hours of reflection to realize that calling for genocide is unacceptable.

The 72 Republican congressmen and two Democrats, Jared Moskowitz and Josh Gottheimer, also asked the university boards to clarify whether the testimony of their presidents aligned with their position and demanded that, if not, they be fired:

Anything less than these steps will be seen as your endorsement of what Presidents Gay, Magill, and Kornbluth said to Congress and an act of complicity in their antisemitic posture. The world is watching — you can stand with your Jewish students and faculty, or you can choose the side of dangerous antisemitism.

Republican Representative Elise Stefanik and her Democratic counterpart Jared Moskowitz wrote the letter, which received support from, among others, Steve Scalise, Chip Roy, Cory Mills, Josh Gottheimer and Scott Fitzgerald.