Smith Statement Condemning President Trump’s Executive Action to Block Refugees and Suspend Visas
“President Trump's reckless executive order on refugees and visa restrictions is contrary to America’s founding principles and threatens our nation's security. The President has chosen to act in direct contrast to our nation’s proud history of helping those in need. President Trump's actions will only create divisions within America, stoke fear and hate, and help recruit more terrorists and extremists to attack America, as well as our partners and friends.
“Refugees--many of them women and children--already undergo an extremely comprehensive and thorough U.S. Government vetting process before being admitted, including scrutiny by the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the State Department, intelligence agencies, and others. Applicants for this status are held to the highest level of security screening through which we evaluate travelers or immigrants to the United States, and the process typically takes between 18-24 months. If U.S. security agencies cannot verify details of a potential refugee’s story, that individual is not allowed to enter the United States.
“The fact that refugees want to make the United States their new home should be a source of pride for us. Even as President Trump threatens our principles in the short term, American values will prevail in the end.”