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Massachusetts Democrat demands universities crack down on anti-Israel protests: 'Shut them down'

Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., called for university leaders to shut down anti-Israel protests on college campuses, saying they had gone too far and threatened Jewish students’ safety.

The Democrat told NBC10 Boston that school leaders had a “responsibility” to shut down the protests for disrupting classes and making many Jewish students feel unsafe on campus.

“We live in a country that values freedom of speech,” Moulton told the local outlet. “But these protests in many cases have threatened the safety of Jewish students. They’ve completely disrupted the operation of universities, preventing all the other kids from being able to go to school. So, the universities have a right, and I would argue in this case, even a responsibility, to shut them down.”

“I was delighted to just see Harvard turn on the sprinklers the other day,” he added, speaking of his alma mater.

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Moulton argued there needed to be a balance between protecting protesters’ First Amendment rights and protecting the safety of Jewish students.

He said protesters “threatening other students” are a problem, but added that universities “have a right to take action.”

Moulton joins other Democrats who’ve begun pressuring universities to squash the disruptive protests.

Nearly two dozen House Democrats wrote a letter Monday urging Columbia University leadership to disband “the unauthorized and impermissible encampment of anti-Israel, anti-Jewish activists on campus.”

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Columbia University anti-Israel protest

Later that morning, Columbia threatened to suspend students or issue other disciplinary measures if they didn’t clear their belongings from the encampments by the afternoon.

“If you do not identify yourself upon leaving and sign the form now, you will not be eligible to sign and complete the semester in good standing. If you do not leave by 2 p.m., you will be suspended pending further investigation,” it warned.

However, some progressive members of Congress visited Columbia on Friday in support of anti-Israel protesters.

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