Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Pa., on Monday afternoon provided additional perspective on President Donald Trump’s executive order temporarily banning refugees from seven majority Muslim nations.
Barletta said in a written statement:
“In a sense, the reaction from some quarters to President Trump’s executive order is understandable, because people are not used to a president who intends to enforce the borders of the United States. It is the president’s job to protect the American people. And it is also important to recognize that citizens of foreign nations simply do not have the right to unfettered admission to the United States. What the president has done is to ensure that we have the time and capability to accurately determine the background of people seeking access to this country. There will be a tiny percentage of travelers who are affected, and of those, most will experience only minor inconveniences while the new policies are enacted. Each day, 325,000 people from other countries attempt to enter the United States. On the day the president’s order took effect, only 109 of those were denied entry.”
Trump’s order, signed Friday, imposes a 90-day ban on travel to the U.S. by citizens of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen. The order also suspends refugee admissions for 120 days and indefinitely bars the processing of refugees from Syria.
“In no way can the order be construed as a ban on any particular religion,” Barletta said. “There are approximately 50 Muslim-majority countries in the world, and this order affects seven of them. These seven nations were identified as terrorist havens by none other than the Obama Administration, and it was this designation which President Trump used in selecting them.”
Trump’s order has been widely supported across the GOP congressional majority ranks.
Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., on Monday called it a necessary step.
“It is crucial that our nation strike the right balance between defending our people against the deadly threat of international terrorism and providing a safe haven for innocent refugees seeking peace and freedom,” Toomey said in a statement.
“I support the administration’s decision to increase vetting and temporarily suspend the admission of certain individuals from states that sponsor or provide safe havens to terrorists, or are too weak to prosecute terrorists within their borders. Terrorists have successfully infiltrated refugee populations entering Europe and gone on to commit heinous acts of barbarity.”
Toomey supports Trump’s refugee policy, but finds executive order ‘flawed and too broad’
Among the Republican voices falling out of rank was that of Rep. Charlie Dent, R-Pa., voiced his concern about the immigration policy in a phone call to the White House, who criticized the order in an interview with the Morning Call in Allentown.
“It appears this order has been rushed through without full consideration of the many nuances of immigration policy that can be life or death for vulnerable people across the world,” he said. “This is not an acceptable situation, and I certainly urge the administration to halt enforcement of this order until a more deliberate policy can be instated,” he added. “I think that’s really the issue right now.”
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