Syrian Immigration: A Grave National Security Threat

Washington, DC:

The burden to keep our immigration system both safe and generous falls on Congress.

America’s immigration system is the most generous in the world. Accordingly, the law allows for those who have a “well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion” to enter the U.S. as a refugee. This definition is importantly limited in scope and applies to individuals on a case-by-case basis. It may not apply to everyone fleeing one country equally.

The State Department, according to its legal authority granted by Congress, announced that 10,000 of the 85,000 refugee slots for 2016 will be reserved for Syrians. Given the current climate around the globe, a refugee population so large, fleeing a war torn region, with ample evidence that a group of Syrian refugees is much more likely to contain Islamic Extremists bent on violence in America creating a completely unsecure, dangerous, and untenable situation for the American people.

During his testimony before the House Committee on Homeland Security FBI Director James Comey clearly indicated that the FBI does not have the ability to conduct thorough background checks on 10,000 Syrian refugees. At the moment, we are convinced there is no possible way to verify the identity and credibility of Syrian refugees, and recognize that to be a grave national security threat. Of the challenge in verifying the identity of a Syrian refugee, he said, ““And so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interest reflected in our database, we can query our database until the cows come home, but there will be nothing show up because we have no record of them.”

Until there is assurance that all potential terrorists are screened out, Syrian refugees cannot be allowed to immigrate to the United States. If the administration is determined to grant refugee status to 10,000 (or more) Syrian refuges, it is incumbent upon Congress to intervene. According to Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the Congress has sole discretion over immigration law and federal spending. On December 11th, funding for all government programs will expire. In the interest of national security, Congress must prohibit funding for the State Department to allow any Syrian immigrant to gain refugee status.

There are compassionate approaches that do not entail the security risks associated with allowing vast numbers of un-vetted, displaced people into the United States. For example, humanitarian support could be provided directly to displaced people currently in refugee camps in the Kurdistan region of Iraq and elsewhere. We could also assist the government of Kurdistan in its efforts to care for those displaced by shifting already allotted financial and/or other resources for the current camps, and also ensure more are built if needed.

Congress should then work with the intelligence agencies to develop a vetting process that assures the nation our refugee laws do not make us less safe. We must be able to verify that any individual seeking any immigration status does not pose a threat to this nation. Congress should pause any new Syrian refugees, and allow a deliberative process for lawmakers to ensure any proposed vetting process is secure, transparent, and respects the role of state governments.

The Honorable Edwin Meese III
Former Attorney General
President Ronald Reagan

The Honorable J. Kenneth Blackwell
Former U.S. Ambassador
UN Human Rights Commission

The Honorable Colin A. Hanna
Let Freedom Ring, Inc.

William L. Walton
Vice President
Council for National Policy

Michael A. Needham
Chief Executive Officer
Heritage Action for America

Erick-Woods Erickson
Editor-in-Chief, RedState
Host of The Erick Erickson Show

Alfred S. Regnery
Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund

David Bozell
President, ForAmerica

Willes K. Lee
Executive Vice President
National Federation of Republican Assemblies

Tim LeFever
Capitol Resource Institute

Jason Jones
Movie to Movement

Lee A. Beaman
Chief Executive Officer
Beaman Automotive

Kevin Freeman
Founder, NSIC Institute

Andrea S. Lafferty
Traditional Values Coalition

Morton C. Blackwell
The Weyrich Lunch

Rod D. Martin
Founder and CEO
The Martin Organization

Sherri R. Martin
The Martin Foundation

Nicholas Stehle
Campaign for the American Future

Hon. Sharron Angle
National Federation of Republican Assemblies

Hon. Jerry Melvin
Florida Republican Assembly

Ron Robinson
Young America’s Foundation

Robert D. Thompson
The Weyrich Lunch

Gary A. Marx
Senior Partner
Madison Strategies

Ron Pearson
Executive Director
Conservative Victory Fund

Dee Hodges
Maryland Taxpayers Association

Richard Manning
Americans for Limited Government

Michael R. Long
State Chairman
New York State Conservative Party

Peter Hoekstra
Shillman Senior Fellow
Investigative Project on Terrorism
Former Chairman, House Intelligence Committee

Andresen Blom
Executive Director
Grassroot Hawaii Action

Elaine Donnelly
Center for Military Readiness

Allen Roth
Secure America Now

Col. Francis X. De Luca USMCR(Ret)
Civitas Institute

Herman Cain
CEO and President

Christopher N. Malagisi
Young Conservatives Coalition

Terrence Scanlon
Capital Research Center

Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
President and CEO
Center for Security Policy

David W. Preston
Executive Director
Oklahoma Wesleyan University Foundation

Mr. Lewis K. Uhler
Founder and President
National Tax Limitation Committee

(All organizations listed for IDENTIFICATION purposes only)

UPDATED: 2/5/16

The Honorable Becky Norton Dunlop
Chairman, Conservative Action Project (CAP)
Former White House Advisor, President Ronald Reagan

The Honorable Tony Perkins
Family Research Council

Ed Corrigan
Former Executive Director
Senate Steering Committee

Herman Pirchner, Jr.
American Foreign Policy Council (AFPC)

The Honorable Bob McEwen
U.S. House of Representatives
Former Member, Ohio

L. Brent Bozell, III
Media Research Center

Diana L. Banister
Shirley & Banister Public Affairs

Hon. James C. Miller III
Former OMB Director
President Ronald Reagan

Bob Adams
Revive America PAC

Seton Motley
Less Government

Neil Patel
Co-founder and Publisher
The Daily Caller

C. Preston Noell III
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.

Kevin Kookogey
President and Founder
The Advancing Church

Bradley Mattes
Life Issues Institute

Tricia Erickson
President, Angel Pictures & Publicity

Susan W. Gore
Wyoming Liberty Group

Russell J. Ramsland, Jr.
Candidate for U.S. House
District 32 – Texas

Hon. Somers H. White
Former Arizona State Senator

Dan Weber
Association of Mature American Citizens (AMAC)

Mike Spence   
Conservative Republicans of California

Ambassador Henry F. Cooper
Former SDI Director
Former Chief Defense and Space Negotiator

Jim Simpson
Author: The Red Green Axis: Refugees, Immigration
and the Agenda to Erase America

Judson Phillips
Founder, Tea Party Nation
TPN Networks &

Tim Wildmon
President, American Family Association

Mat Staver, Esq.
Founder and Chairman
Liberty Counsel

Charles J. Cooper
Cooper & Kirk, PLLC

Hon. Mike Hill
Florida State Representative
District 2

Thomas P. Kilgannon
Freedom Alliance

Robert K. Fischer
Meeting Coordinator for Conservatives of Faith

Gary L. Bauer
American Values

Melissa Ortiz
Founder & Principal
Able Americans

Jim Backlin
Christian Coalition of America

Donna Hearne
Chief Executive Officer
The Constitutional Coalition

Belden Bell
The Heritage Foundation

Peter J. Thomas
Americans for Constitutional Liberty

Tom DeLay
Former House Majority Leader

Rick Scarborough
Vision America Action

Lt. Col. Allen B. West (US Army, Ret)
President/CEO, National Center for Policy Analysis
Member, 112th US Congress