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Lawmakers in the House of Representatives voted 310 to 91 Wednesday to codify a broad definition of antisemitism into federal civil rights law.

Supporters of the Antisemitism Awareness Act of 2023 said the legislation is necessary to protect Jewish students and hold colleges and universities accountable for keeping them safe. The act requires the U.S. Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights to use the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism when enforcing Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race and national origin. The Office for Civil Rights already uses the definition following a 2019 executive order, but supporters argue the bill will give it more force. Several states and countries have also adopted the definition.

“Codifying a single definition of antisemitism will help the Department of Education and school administrators, who have been feckless, clearly identify instances of antisemitism and protect the safety of all students, including Jewish students,” said Representative Mike Lawler, a New York Republican who co-sponsored the bill.

Critics said that under the IHRA definition, criticism of Israel would be considered antisemitic, which would chill free speech.

Lawmakers who didn’t support the legislation said during the floor debate Wednesday that the legislation wouldn’t address the issue of antisemitism on college campuses.

“If you believe that the threats and vitriol that Jewish students face on college campuses is unjust, and that combating antisemitism is more than a convenient talking point in your politically motivated crusade against institutions of higher education, then I beseech you, please move beyond pointless gestures and posturing and actually help us protect Jewish students,” said Representative Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat who spoke against the bill.