178. Allowing Terror-Linked Refugees into the U.S.
The debate over the United States’ acceptance of refugees from Syria and other countries related to radical Islamic terror amplified after the Paris attacks in November of 2015. President Obama’s promise to take in 10,000 Syrian refugees by September 2016 has received harsh criticism from concerned citizens and elected officials.
While most of the disapproval has been from Republicans, there are also many Democrats who oppose the admittance of these refugees at this time. Forty-seven House Democrats voted with the Republicans in favor of the 289-137 bill last year.
This is a bill that they knew would likely stop Syrian and Iraqi refugees from coming into the United States. The legislation would toughen the screening process. Instead of proving that they are dangerous, the bill requires intelligence officials, law enforcement and the Department of Homeland Security to officially certify that each refugee from a war-torn country is not dangerous.
Immediately following the Paris attacks, 31 states declared their opposition to taking in Syrian refugees. Kentucky was one of these states, and I do think this state has a legitimate case against the federal government taking this action.
According to an ABC News investigation, “two Iraqi refugees settled in Bowling Green turned out to be al Qaeda-linked terrorists with the blood of American soldiers on their hands.”
Both pleaded guilty to terror-related charges after trying to acquire weapons. while in America’s heartland. The 2013 ABC News investigation also found that there are several dozen other suspected terrorist bombmakers, including some who were believed to have targeted U.S. troops, may have mistakenly been allowed to move to the U.S. as Iraq and Afghanistan War refugees.
While I believe the restrictions have increased and the vetting has recently improved, I do not think any of those improvements were pushed by President Obama. As Commander in Chief, it is his number one job to keep Americans safe. While his compassion to the refugees is admirable, it only takes one terrorist to take numerous American lives. The refugee who stabbed and ran over students in Ohio yesterday is yet another example of this.