Washington, D.C. – On Wednesday, October 7, 2015 at 10:30 a.m., the House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing to examine the Syrian refugee crisis and its impact on the security of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. President Obama has set the overall refugee ceiling at 85,000 for Fiscal Year 2016 and announced that the Administration will admit 10,000 Syrian refugees over the coming year.
Below are statements from House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Immigration and Border Security Subcommittee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) on this hearing. Witnesses for the hearing will be announced in the coming days.
Chairman Goodlatte: “While the United States already has the most generous refugee policies in the world, we must ensure that those seeking refuge in the United States do not pose national security threats to our nation. Recently, President Obama announced his intention to admit 10,000 Syrian refugees into the United States over the coming year. Because the Obama Administration has failed to address the rise of ISIS in Syria and the region, a humanitarian crisis has erupted. I am deeply concerned about the rise of ISIS, its threat to our national security, and the humanitarian crisis it has created.
“Next week, the House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the national security and public safety implications of our nation’s refugee program, including the Obama Administration’s plan to resettle thousands of Syrian refugees. As we examine the Administration’s plan and the overall refugee program, it’s important to remember that most refugees prefer to go back to their home countries and live in peace. The best way to stem this refugee crisis is to promote peace in the region and support humanitarian operations in affected countries and not try to bring more and more people to the United States.”
Subcommittee Chairman Gowdy: “America has a proud history of providing refuge for those who have been persecuted for their beliefs or otherwise face imminent harm. But we also have a duty to ensure the necessary background checks can be done to stop terrorists from exploiting Americans’ generosity and ruthlessly taking more innocent lives.
“The Administration has not provided certainty to Congress that they have a plan to prevent ISIS from infiltrating our country through the refugee program. Instead, the President’s idea of consultation is to decide to accept thousands of new refugees with or without congressional support. This displacement has occurred because of this Administration’s feckless foreign policy. Many of those displaced want a safe, secure homeland in or near the Middle East and that should be the priority. We look forward to examining our refugee program at this upcoming hearing.”
This hearing will take place in 2141 Rayburn House Office Building and will be webcast live at https://judiciary.house.gov/. Camera crews wishing to cover must be congressionally-credentialed and RSVP with the House Radio-TV Gallery at (202) 225-5214.