Ted Cruz cosponsors bill with New York Democrat to recover Nazi-confiscated art

CBS News 7 April 2016
By Reena Flores

Just as the Republican primary race shifts focus to New York ahead of its April 19 nominating contest, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is co-sponsoring a bill aimed at recovering Nazi-confiscated art with the state's prominent Democratic senator, Chuck Schumer.

"The phrase 'never forget' is more than a slogan," Cruz said in a statement Thursday. "'Never forget' means working to right all the terrible injustices of the Holocaust, even if many decades have passed."

The Holocaust Expropriated Art Recovery Act was introduced Thursday by a bipartisan group of senators, including Cruz, Schumer, Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Connecticut. The HEAR Act would ensure that U.S. law "encourages the resolution of claims on Nazi-confiscated art on the merits, in a fair and just manner," according to a press release.

Cruz, who is in New York for presidential campaign events this week, added that the legislation is also meant to be relevant in the current global climate, when terror groups like the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) continue to loot cultural artifacts to fund their extremist activities.

"The HEAR Act will make it clear that the United States takes a strong stand against the looting and trafficking of antiquities and other artifacts," Cruz said. "I am proud to have worked closely with my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to introduce this bill."

Cruz's sponsorship of the bill comes just as the Texas senator sought to court Jewish voters in Brooklyn Thursday. Cruz toured a local matzah bakery before making a public appearance at the Jewish Center of Brighton Beach.

A pro-Cruz super PAC will also make a play for the Jewish vote in Las Vegas this weekend. According to the New York Times, the Trusted Leadership PAC will gather together several donors for a meeting in the Venetian casino hotel starting Friday, owned by GOP megadonor Sheldon Adelson.
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