Jewish leaders backed a Pittsburgh City Council measure to oppose Pennsylvania House Bill 2029, which has become known as “the anti-Shariah law bill.”
Council passsed the resolution by a unanimous vote, Tuesday, March 6, at a meeting attended by representatives from several faith communities that are against passage of H.B. 2029.
Rabbi James Gibson of Temple Sinai, and Marshall Dayan of the Pittsburgh Area Jewish Committee, both spoke out in favor of the resolution to oppose the bill.
H.B. 2029, which has been held up in the House Judiciary Committee since November, proposes to prohibit the application of “foreign” law when it is found to be inconsistent with the principles of the federal and state constitutions. Muslim, Jewish and Catholic groups have criticized the bill, saying it is aimed at prohibiting the application of Shariah law in particular, and as encroaching on religious freedom in general.
The City Council resolution, sponsored by Councilman William Peduto, calls on the Pennsylvania General Assembly “to reject H.B. 2029 as unnecessary and inconsistent with our core constitutional principles.”
The bill is sponsored by state Rep. RoseMarie Swanger. Twenty-six other states are considering enacting similar legislation, and Oklahoma and Tennessee already have passed such laws.
(Toby Tabachnick can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)