New batch of ‘morally bankrupt’ college administrators to be grilled over campus antisemitism by House

Members of Congress are preparing to grill “morally bankrupt administrators” from Northwestern, UCLA and Rutgers Thursday regarding their handling of campus antisemitism that has swept the nation’s colleges.  

“Northwestern, Rutgers and UCLA negotiated with pro-Hamas terrorist encampments, bent the knee to the radical antisemitic mob and surrendered their campuses to illegal antisemitic encampments while repeatedly ignoring the harassment and violence against Jewish students and faculty,” Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., told Fox News Digital. “House Republicans will use every tool at our disposal to ensure accountability from campus leadership for allowing self-proclaimed terrorists to turn once acclaimed American colleges into dens of antisemitic hate.”

Titled “Calling for Accountability: Stopping Antisemitic College Chaos,” the hearing will begin Thursday morning, when Northwestern President Michael Schill, UCLA Chancellor Gene Block and Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway will testify before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce regarding their “dereliction of” duty to Jewish students, according to the committee’s press release. 

“The American people want answers. Why are some of our most prestigious universities backing down in a moment that requires moral clarity? The disruptors showing up at schools nationwide have been taught these tactics because weak and morally bankrupt administrators refuse to take decisive action,” Republican New York Rep. Brandon Williams, who also sits on the Committee on Education and the Workforce, told Fox News Digital Wednesday. 


Brandon Williams, GOP congressman from New York

Rep. Brandon Williams, R-N.Y., outside the U.S. Capitol during the last votes of the week May 25, 2023. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

The committee is the same body that grilled the presidents of Penn, Harvard and MIT last year about their handling of campus antisemitism. The hearing was shortly followed by Penn President Liz Magill and Harvard President Claudine Gay resigning from their positions amid widespread backlash for waffling on whether calls for the genocide of Jews violated their respective schools’ codes of conduct. 


college administrators at table in antisemitism hearing on Capitol HIll

Dr. Claudine Gay, president of Harvard University; Liz Magill, president of the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Pamela Nadell, professor of history and Jewish studies at American University; and Dr. Sally Kornbluth, president of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, testify before the House Education and Workforce Committee at the Rayburn House Office Building Dec. 5, 2023, in Washington, D.C. (Getty Images)

Each school facing scrutiny Thursday has been rocked by anti-Israel protests since last month, and UCLA saw more than 200 arrests earlier in May when police clad in riot gear stormed the campus to clear out an anti-Israel encampment. 

Rutgers also had a large encampment on campus, where student agitators and others pledged support for Palestinians while demanding the school cut financial ties with Israel. Northwestern became the first school in the nation to publicly announce that university leaders struck a deal with campus agitators, allowing students to review school investments connected to Israel and to fund Palestinians-related scholarships and faculty salaries in exchange for protesters largely dismantling their encampment. 


left to right, Michael Schill, Jonathan Holloway, and Gene Block

Northwestern President Michael Schill, Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway and UCLA Chancellor Gene Block. (University of Oregon/Rutgers/Getty )

Last month, Columbia University dominated headlines as student agitators and outsiders staged large protests on campus denouncing Israel. The protests soon turned threatening after video footage showed an agitator holding a sign directed at Jewish students that said “Al-Qasam’s next targets,” referring to the military wing of Hamas. A local rabbi warned Jewish students to leave campus for their own safety, while a business professor at the Ivy League school told Fox News Digital at the time protesters “crossed the line” and became “an actual terror organization.” 

Student agitator encampment on Columbia University

Student protesters camp near the entrance to Hamilton Hall on the campus of Columbia University April 30, 2024, in New York.  (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, Pool)

Columbia’s protests were soon followed by encampments on college campuses nationwide, including at some of the nation’s most prestigious universities, such as Harvard, Penn, Yale, USC and others. 


anti-Israel agitator waving Palestinian flag atop Columbia University building

An anti-Israel demonstrator holds a flag on the rooftop of Hamilton Hall at Columbia University in New York April 30, 2024.  (Yuki Iwamura/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The protests have been associated with groups tied to far-left organizations backed by dark money and liberal megadonor George Soros, Fox News Digital previously reported. Namely, the National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP) has had a large presence amid the protests on Columbia University’s campus, as well as on the campuses of UCLA, Tufts and the University of Texas at Austin. 

For the leaders at Rutgers, UCLA and Northwestern, critics have not held back that they botched their handling of the protests, with some calling on them to resign.

Rutgers anti-Israel encampment on May 21, 2024

Students at Rutgers University set up a Gaza solidarity encampment at the Rutgers-Newark campus in Newark, N.J., May 21, 2024. (Lokman Vural Elibol/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Rutgers and Northwestern leaders both came under fire from the Jewish community for striking deals with campus agitators to quell their protests and encampments. 

“The campus has rules and regulations for how students should act on campus and for appropriate protest. This seemed to be capitulation to a group of students who were extorting the school based on their disruption of finals,” David Levy, director of the New Jersey Region of the American Jewish Committee, told North earlier this month. 

“The school had to move 28 different exams for 1,000 students because of the protests, and I’ve been told Jewish students were harassed making their way to class, which is against all school guidelines.”

Rutgers student Ezra Pfeffer told Fox News Digital that antisemitism has long been an issue on the New Jersey school’s campus.


“I am very much looking forward to the hearing as the antisemitism at Rutgers has been a recurring issue ever since I was a freshman,” Pfeffer said. “Too many instances have been brushed under the rug, and I hope we can finally put an end to this issue. As a Jewish student on the brink of graduation, I want to be able to confidently recommend Rutgers to my younger Jewish friends when they are applying to college.” 

Another student, Joe Gindi, told Fox News Digital the “encampment at Rutgers or those at other schools can in no way be depicted as ‘pro-peace’ in any sort of way.” 

“They are pro-violence, pro-war, anti-two-state-solution, anti-peace of any kind. They seek to make Jewish students afraid to be on their own campuses, and, in that, they have succeeded,” Gindi said. “I and many Jewish students are looking forward to the university living up to its commitment to upholding the code of conduct. 

“Public interest in Rutgers (a state university) is completely warranted and has helped Jewish students and all students in many regards understand the president is in a difficult position, but I am guardedly optimistic that he will be clear about where mistakes were made at Rutgers and what our path forward will be.”

Northwestern’s president, Schill, is facing calls to resign. 

Northwestern University anti-Israel encampment

Students and residents camp outside Northwestern University during an anti-Israel protest, expressing solidarity with Palestinians with banners in Evanston, Ill., April 27, 2024.  (Jacek Boczarski/Anadolu via Getty Images)

“Jewish Northwestern students have been harassed and intimidated by blatant antisemitism on campus, worsening since October 7,” the Anti-Defamation League wrote in a petition earlier this month. “Protestors openly mocked and violated Northwestern’s codes of conduct and policies by erecting an encampment that fanned the flames of anti-Jewish hate. 

“This week, instead of holding the protestors accountable, Northwestern’s President Michael Schill rewarded them with negotiations and an agreement granting some of their demands. President Michael Schill’s actions amount to giving in to hatred and bigotry, empowering and emboldening those who have used intimidation, harassment, and violence to achieve their goals.”


Northwestern Kellogg School of Management student Zeev Wolf Cukiert Sztrigler told Fox News Digital Schill’s “only sensible action” at this point is to resign. 

“I was assaulted by (an) NU affiliate. How does striking a deal make me and other Jewish students safer if the assailant walks around campus feeling empowered? The only sensible action President Schill can do at this point is resign,” he said. 

Critics of Schill’s set up a protest display outside a law firm in Washington, D.C., where the school president is preparing for the hearing, demanding his firing, Fox News Digital has learned. 

protest van with sign reading "protect Jews. Fire Schill."

A protest display outside a law firm in Washington, D.C., where Northwestern President Schill is preparing for a congressional hearing.  (Fox News Digital )

Fox News Digital previously reported that Schill is expected to face intense questioning regarding associate journalism professor Steven Thrasher, who has repeatedly justified Hamas’ attack on Israel in social media posts. 

Hamas tunnel-rat demonstrator protesting Northwestern

A protest in New York City against the chair of the Northwestern University Board of Trustees, Peter Barris, regarding the school’s handling of antisemitism.  (Fox News Digital )

In a November blog post, “Tearing down the Wall,” Thrasher compared Gaza to a Nazi concentration camp, arguing, “We can feel compassion towards a desperate people stuck inside a Nazi concentration camp.” 

He also argued that if Jews were able to break free from concentration camps, they would have killed “anyone they found partying,” thus seemingly justifying Hamas’ attack on the Nova Music Festival on Oct. 7, when hundreds of people were killed and dozens of others taken hostage.


Northwestern University Professor Steven Thrasher

Steven Thrasher attending Out Magazine’s Out100 Event Nov. 21, 2019, in Long Island City, N.Y.  (Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Out)

“If the Jews being shot and shoveled into ovens could just break through that wall, of course, they would kill anyone they found partying right on the other side of it! And, of course, they would take women and children hostage and drag them back into their hell inside if doing so would give them leverage to free their fellow Jews from torture and death!” he wrote

The school has also come under increased scrutiny following a report showing Qatar, a nation that has sheltered Hamas terrorist leaders, donated roughly $690 million to the school since 2007. Republican Utah Congressman Burgess Owens, who chairs the Higher Education and Workforce Development Subcommittee, noted the large donation in a comment to Fox News Digital. 

“Since Oct. 7, our committee has relentlessly investigated campus antisemitism and the influx of foreign funding into America’s higher education system, including Northwestern University’s $700 million from Qatar, a nation that has bankrolled and harbored Hamas leaders since 2012,” Owens said. 

“Today’s hearing on anti-Israel encampments is a key moment to ask these presidents about their financial ties and cowardly responses to pro-Hamas protesters who praised terrorist organizations, called for violence against Jewish students and advocated for the destruction of the democratic state of Israel.” 

Burgess Owens in hearing

Rep. Burgess Owens, R-Utah, attends the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee organizational meeting and hearing, “The State of Transportation Infrastructure and Supply Chain Challenges,” in Rayburn Building Feb. 1, 2023.  (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Jewish leaders and supporters of the anti-Israel protests have called for UCLA Chancellor Gene Block’s resignation over his handling of the campus encampment. 

Anti-Israel agitators at UCLA wave Palestinian flag

Hundreds of students protest outside the Palestine Solidarity Encampment on the campus of UCLA in Los Angeles May 1, 2024.  (Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images)

The hearing marks the third time the Committee on Education and the Workforce grilled college presidents over campus antisemitism, including in December when Stefanik had especially fiery exchanges with a trio of academics from MIT, Harvard and Penn, pressing them to answer if “calling for the genocide of Jews” violates the respective schools’ codes of conduct. 

Rep. Elise Stefanik, New York Republican

Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., talks at the House Committee on Education and the Workforce hearing on “Columbia in Crisis: Columbia University’s Response to Antisemitism” on Capitol Hill in Washington April 17, 2024. (AP/Mariam Zuhaib)


The presidents of Harvard and Penn, Claudine Gay and Liz Magill, respectively, came under fire for both answering Stefanik that such comments would violate the schools’ codes of conduct depending on the “context.” Both presidents subsequently resigned from their positions after widespread condemnation from Jewish communities nationwide, alumni and students. 

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