Army veteran Taylor Force served two tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq before enrolling at Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management.
In 2016, on a trip to study international business, the Texas native became the latest victim of Islamic extremism in Israel, where the Palestinian government pays terrorists to murder Americans and Israelis.
“Taylor served his country, working to protect Americans and to make the world a safer place. In his memory, the House has passed severe restrictions on financial aid to the Palestinian Authority, funding terrorism, while the majority of its people subsist in poverty,” said U.S. Rep.Scott DesJarlais. “Until it ends institutional support for violence against innocent civilians, the government there will never be a legitimate partner for peace.”
The Taylor Force Act, which the House of Representatives passed Wednesday, would require the Palestinian Authority to renounce support for payments to terrorists and to abolish laws and funding, including for affiliate organizations. The U.S. Secretary of State must regularly certify compliance.
“Sadly, Taylor is not the only American citizen to have died in the climate of hate the Authority’s radical policies create. Taxpayers here should have no part,” said DesJarlais.
If successful, terrorists and their families receive pensions and other financial rewards from a Martyrs Fund. According to estimates, the territorial government spends approximately $300 million annually, or seven percent of its budget, on such payments. Because foreign aid to alleviate poverty and debt in the West Bank is fungible, American taxpayer dollars, averaging $335 million per year, free funds for martyrdom operations or may directly subsidize them.
On Thursday, an original co-sponsor of the legislation DesJarlais voted for the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act, a bill that would allow any Tennessean licensed to carry a concealed handgun in his home state, to carry it in another where concealed-carry is also legal, as long that person follows local law.
“The right to self-defense is an unalienable one and the most important to protecting ourselves from harm, as the Supreme Court has decided,” DesJarlais said. “Our Constitution guarantees that right, and also that states must respect our common laws.”
“Today’s bill ensures Tennesseans who wish to exercise their Second Amendment rights will face no undue burden when traveling to gun-friendly states,” he said.
DesJarlais said he is a strong Second Amendment supporter, as well as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, who after terror attacks at a recruitment center and military facility near Chattanooga in 2015, guided passage of a law allowing more service members to carry firearms on base.