Illustration by Ed Supovitz
Robert Wexler

Florida Atlantic University Libraries

Jewish Heroes and

Heroines of America

from World War II to the Present:

A Judaica Collection Exhibit

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Congressman Robert Wexler

by Seymour “Sy” Brody

Robert Wexler is a Democratic member of Congress, who has been in the forefront of
fighting for the vital needs of all people. He is a strong and straight forward advocate
for protecting social security and our seniors, protecting the rights of veterans,
improving education, exposing and fighting bigotry and global terrorism.

He believed that some Jewish and Latino military heroes had received downgraded military awards for bravery because of discrimination. He presented a bill in Congress, which was passed, that the military review about100 Jews and Latinos heroes and to upgrade their awards to the Medal of Honor if they found that discrimination was a factor.

As a result of these military reviews, Tibor Rubin was the first Jewish recipient to receive the Medal of Honor. On September 23, 2005, President George Bush presented him with the award at a White House ceremony.

Robert Wexler earned a reputation as an articulate legislator who energetically advocates for his constituents. By his second term, Wexler was named one of the “50 Most Effective Legislators in Congress” by the influential magazine, Congressional Quarterly. In 2004, Wexler was named to the Forward 50 list as one of the most influential leaders in the American Jewish community.

Congressman Wexler’s top priorities are a meaningful Medicare prescription drug benefit for seniors, ensuring the viability of social security and improving public education. He is also devoted to making our nation safe from the global threat of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. Wexler’s legislative initiatives have covered a broad range of issues including several health care initiatives, enhanced benefits for veterans, equity for “Notch Babies”and increased funding for public school construction.

Congressman Wexler is a senior Member of the International Relations Committee and is the ranking Democrat on the Europe and Emerging Threats Subcommittee and also serves on the Terrorism and Non-Proliferation Subcommittee.

Wexler has worked to strengthen the transatlantic alliance, build bonds and extend cooperation with Central and Eastern European nations and help guide the economic and political development of the former Soviet States.

Wexler serves as an American representative to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and is the co-founder of the Caucus on U.S.-Turkish Relations, the Taiwan Caucus and the Indonesia Caucus.
He is also an active member of the India Caucus and the Serbia Caucus.

In addition, Wexler serves on the Judiciary Committee and the Internet and Intellectual Property Subcommittee. Through his work on the Judiciary Committee, Wexler was an outspoken critic of the impeachment hearings against President Clinton.

Throughout his tenure in Congress, Wexler has been an outspoken advocate for the unbreakable bond between the United States and Israel and a leading proponent of Israel’s right to self defense.

He has traveled on numerous congressional delegations to the Middle East and met with the leaders of Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Kuwait, Turkey, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Oman.

At President Clinton’s invitation, he was the only member of the House of Representatives present during the signing of the Wye River Peace Agreement. In addition, Wexler was one of two Congressmen to travel to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at The Hague to oppose the Palestinian case against Israel’s construction of a security barrier.

Following the 2000 presidential election controversy in Florida that centered in his Palm Beach and Broward County district, Congressman Wexler led the effort to comprehensively reform our electoral system. He sponsored federal legislation that replaced punch-card voting machines with state-of-the-art technology, while providing more resources to train poll workers and educate voters. Wexler has devoted enormous efforts to instituting a “paper trail” to ensure accuracy in voting systems and enhance voter confidence.

Wexler, who previously served in the Florida Senate for six years, represents Florida's 19th Congressional district, which comprises portions of Broward and Palm Beach Counties. Born in Queens, New York, Congressman

Wexler moved to South Florida with his family at age 10. He earned his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Florida and law degree from George Washington University. Congressman Wexler and his wife, Laurie, have three children. His Bar Mitzvah took place in Hollywood, Florida, and he currently attends the Boca Raton Synagogue.
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Justin Moranski, Computer Article Consultant

For additional information, contact
Special Collections and Archives
S.E. Wimberly Library



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