The Obama administration’s assurances concerning the admission of thousands of Syrian refugees — given the national security concerns — are not enough, two Republican leaders warn.
In a joint statement House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) expressed their concerns that the Obama administration’s plans to resettle 10,000 additional Syrian refugees will be infiltrated by terrorists.
“ISIS and other terrorist groups have made it abundantly clear that they will use the refugee crisis to try to enter the United States,” the pair said Sunday. “Now, the Obama administration wants to bring in an additional ten thousand Syrians without a concrete and foolproof plan to ensure that terrorists won’t be able to enter the country.”
Over the weekend, Secretary of State John Kerry revealed that the Obama administration would be accepting 85,000 refugees next year — beyond the 75,000 Kerry told lawmakers earlier this month — including an additional 10,000 Syrian refugees. That refugee figure, Kerry added, the administration hopes to push to 100,000 refugees the following year.
Republican lawmakers have raised serious concerns about the vetting process and possible national security implications. House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX), for example, has characterized the plan as “very reckless and dangerous.”
“The administration has essentially given the American people a ‘trust me.’ That isn’t good enough,” Grassley and Goodlatte said Sunday.
Democrats, meanwhile have argued that next year’s 10,000 Syrian refugee commitment is not enough. Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Martin O’Malley have both called for the U.S. to resettle some 65,000 Syrian refugees.