Foster Votes Against Efforts To Block Refugees, Calls For Serious Discussion On Security
Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) voted against H.R. 4038, the so called American SAFE Act of 2015, and released the following statement:
“Our first priority is to always keep Americans safe. I am disappointed that this legislation was not a serious attempt to address security concerns, but is instead a political football that would not improve the security of vetting systems already in place. This bill would attempt to set unworkable standards that could only be met by shutting the door to refugees. America has always been a place of refuge for those fleeing strife, and that should never change.
“The vast majority of these people are fleeing ISIS -- these are the families that have chosen to not live under terror and violence. Yes they need to be screened before entering the US, and the Administration has in place a time consuming and thorough process involving multiple intelligence and law enforcement agencies, including the National Counterterrorism Center, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Departments of Homeland Security, State, and Defense.
“Refugees coming into the US are screened more closely than any other group, in a process that takes 18 to 24 months. While we cannot ignore the serious security concerns that have been raised by the attacks in Paris, we need a thoughtful discussion on how to improve our system, not a Donald Trump style proposal to block all immigrants.
“I hope that we can move past the harmful rhetoric and fearmongering and towards a thoughtful debate with our intelligence community on what more can be done to ensure a workable refugee intake system while continuing to take every precaution to ensure our safety.”