The Obama administration is planning to bring in a greater number of refugees into the United States by shirking the vetting process and this sent alarm bells ringing on Capitol Hill as lawmakers warn that the Obama administration is not capable of thoroughly vetting these refugees and their possible ties to terrorism.
The Obama administration plans on bringing 10,000 Syrian refugees into the United States during fiscal year 2016 by fast-tracking the security screening procedures from 18-24 months to approximately three months. The Obama administration remains committed to the plan despite stern warnings from the FBI and other law enforcement officials stating that the federal government is not in a position to properly vet these refugees in that three-month time frame.
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are insistent that the State Department and the White House reconsider this plan; arguing the point that critical security concerns must be addressed before this plan is put into action. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) said,
“We know the 18- to 24-month vetting process for Syrian refugees has severe vulnerabilities after FBI Director James Comey warned about the federal government’s inability to thoroughly screen Syrian refugee applicants for terrorism risk and after the Department of Homeland Security’s investigative arm warned about ISIS’s capability to print fake Syrian passports for terrorist infiltration. Given that the administration has not explained to the American people whether and how it fixed these and other known vulnerabilities to terrorist infiltration, it is highly irresponsible for the administration to reduce the 18- to 24-month vetting process for Syrian refugees down to three months to meet its artificial and ideologically-driven goal of bringing 10,000 Syrian refugees onto U.S. soil by September.”
(Senator Kirk recently introduced legislation that would enforce strict screening protocols to prevent terrorists from taking advantage of the U.S. refugee program. Click here to track Defend America Act of 2015)
A senior Congressional source said,
“The vetting process clearly wasn’t ‘robust’ when it resettled two terrorists as refugees in Kentucky who were later arrested in 2011 after law enforcement officials learned, belatedly and through no small amount of luck, of the ties and material support of these individuals to ISIS’s precursor, al Qaeda in Iraq. [U.S. authorities have no databases that can identify potential terrorists and while the] U.S. and coalition forces worked with Iraqi authorities to create databases for identifying terrorists during the Iraq conflict who might be infiltrating refugee flows, FBI Director Comey has made it clear in congressional testimony there is no equivalent capability today for identifying terrorists from the Syrian conflict who might seek to do the same.”
The Obama administration’s refugee plan is a hot topic in the 2016 elections with Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) embracing this plan as she seeks to unseat Senator Kirk; clearly choosing the reckless and lackadaisical three-month vetting of refugees over the safety of Americans. Rep. Duckworth forgets that in December of 2015, two ISIS sympathizers went on a shooting rampage in San Bernardino, killing 14 innocent people with one of the domestic terrorists actually making it through the proper channels, albeit, haphazardly and Rep Duckworth supports the idea of circumventing an 18-24 month vetting process for a three month one?
Clearly, Americans and our safety is not on her “to do” list. A member of Senator Kirk’s campaign summed it up with this statement,
“Duckworth’s plan to bring in 200,000 unsafely vetted Syrian refugees wasn’t considered safe when the administration had two years to vet each refugee for terrorist ties—it’s downright dangerous now that the vetting has been cut to just three months.”
Remember, it’s military aged Syrian men who are seeking ‘refuge’ and the Obama administration wants to speed up the process of letting them in the United States without thoroughly vetting them. Will the Obama administration listen to reason and vet these refugees properly or will it just fall on deaf ears as we await another national tragedy due to lack of concern for Americans because a “refugee” was more important? Sound off in the comments below!