Senate Democrats Block Ted Cruz Refugee Bills

Ted Cruz makes a point AP PhotoSenate TV
AP Photo/Senate TV

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Democrat senators today sided with President Barack Obama in the growing conflict between the president and other federal and state officials on how to deal with Syrian refugees in the aftermath of ISIS’s terrorist attacks in Paris.

Earlier this week, Breitbart News reported on Obama’s authority under current federal law to bring refugees into the United States. The analytical report explained how governors have limited powers to hinder Obama’s plan (which they should use), but Congress can stop him cold.

For congressional action, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is attempting to advance two pieces of legislation to change how the United States would deal with possible refugees. The Expatriate Terrorist Act (S. 247) would change federal law to strip of their U.S. citizenship any adult American who takes an oath pledging allegiance to a foreign terrorist organization, or joins an overseas terrorist force to take up arms against the United States. And the Terrorist Refugee Infiltration Prevention Act (S. 2302) would bar refugees from countries in which substantial territory is held by terrorists, such as Syria, Iraq, and Libya.

Today two of Obama’s staunch defenders in Congress, Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), stalled Cruz’s legislation.

“Unfortunately, the Democratic Party, the Democratic senators in this body have chosen to stand with President Obama and his absurd political correctness, his unwillingness even to utter the words, ‘radical Islamic terrorism,’” Cruz said on the Senate floor after his legislation was blocked. “The very first obligation of the commander-in-chief is to keep this nation safe. And I will say any official that is responsible for bringing people in that they do not know if they are radical Islamic terrorists will bear responsibility for the consequences of their action.”

Ken Klukowski is legal editor for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.