This week, we had the opportunity to talk with hundreds of pro-Israel advocates from the 10th District who were in Washington D.C. for the annual AIPAC Policy Conference. Seeing so many constituents make the effort to come to Washington, D.C. for this important educational conference on the U.S.-Israel relationship underscored something that I have long known – that the 10th District of Illinois is home to one of the most passionate pro-Israel communities in the nation.

Israel and the United States have a special relationship, and the security challenges facing our two nations right now can only be overcome if we confront those challenges together. Whether it is standing against an increasingly emboldened Iran, cutting off Iran’s path to a nuclear weapon, ensuring robust security assistance to Israel, condemning the incitement of violence against Israelis, or combating efforts to delegitimize Israel, a strong U.S.-Israel relationship is needed now more than ever.

With so much at stake, I am committed to being more than just a vote, but rather, a leading voice in the U.S. Congress. I have never been afraid to speak out publicly when it comes to Israel’s long-term security, and I have always understood the importance of making the extra effort to ensure that the U.S.-Israel relationship remains bipartisan.

In recent years, I have made several trips to Israel because there is no substitute for being on the ground and seeing firsthand the security challenges our two nations face together. Among other key issues, these visits have focused on combating efforts in the international community to pressure and delegitimize Israel.

One of the pressing problems facing Israel right now is the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. Many people remain unaware of the threat this hateful and misguided movement poses to Israel. I took a minute to answer a question about BDS and our new bipartisan bill, the Combating BDS Act of 2016. Take a look: