Editor’s Note: I keep waiting for someone to say ” I didn’t vote for a change to this program because it is unconstitutional on it’s face and needs to be repealed.” It’s a good thing I am not holding my breath.
Reps. Steve King, R-Iowa, and Walter Jones, R-N.C., said Thursday that they voted against legislation to impose enhanced background checks on all refugees from Syria because the bill didn’t go far enough.
“How can we trust this Obama administration who will not utter the words ‘radical Islamic jihad’ to accurately screen Syrian and Iraqi refugees as required in this bill?” King said in a statement after the House passed the bill. “For that reason, I submitted an amendment to rules, which was ultimately not adopted, that would create international safe zones for refugees in their homeland. I respect the House trying to find a solution but I do not believe this was the right or strong enough one.”
King is considered one of Congress’ biggest hardliners on immigration issues, and recently threw his weight behind Ted Cruz’s campaign for president.
Jones said he also voted “no” because he can’t trust President Obama.
“Defunding President Obama’s refugee program is the only way to ensure that America can actually stop a refugee influx until we can determine without question that we are not giving terrorists a free pass into the United States,” Jones said. “Even if today’s bill were to pass the Congress and be signed into law, the president would still retain the power to let in whoever, and however many, refugees he pleases.”
Jones has been highly skeptical of the Syrian refugee influx before today’s vote, and urged House Speaker Paul Ryan “to block funds for the Obama administration’s massive Middle Eastern refugee resettlement program.” Jones’ website refers to Syrian refugees in quotation marks, and describes proposals to admit some of them into the U.S. as an “importation” of “Middle East refugees.”
The issue of Syrian refugees continues to receive prime attention in the national political debate in the wake of Friday’s Paris terrorist attacks that killed 129.
President Obama has pledged to veto the House bill.