White House Press Secretary, Josh Earnest, announced on Thursday that Pres. Obama wants the U.S. to accept at least 10,000 Syrian refugees in the next fiscal year. This is six times more than was admitted into the U.S. this year. The increase comes after the European Union and members of both parties encouraged the Obama administration to do more to aid in the humanitarian crisis.
The E.U. is struggling to develop a plan to deal with the over 100,000 refugees fleeing from the Syrian civil war. Some European countries, such as Germany, are welcoming the refugees while other countries, like Hungary, are refusing to let any more into the country. Around 1,500 Syrian refugees have entered the U.S. since the Syrian civil war began. While lagging in accepting refugees, compared to other European countries, the U.S. has been the biggest donor to the Syrian refugee crisis in an effort to keep, “the problem over there, and not having it come over here,” said Jon B. Alterman, who directs the Middle East program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
One reason the U.S. has not taken in more refugees is due to the long time-consuming procedure to block Islamist terrorists from entering the United States disguised as refugees. Once refugees arrive in the U.S. they are eligible for Medicaid and become permanent residents authorized to work in the country. They can receive a green card after one year and become a U.S. citizen after five years. After the Syrian war is over and it is safe they can return home. However, according to Kevin Appleby, director of migration policy for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, “most of them will stay. Then they’ll try to petition for families to join them if they can.”
NumbersUSA has called for passage of Rep. Brian Babin's (R-Texas) Resettlement Accountability National Security Act, H.R.3314, that would immediately suspend the refugee resettlement program in the United States until the Government Accountability Office can further examine its costs and potential threats to national security. In the meantime, NumbersUSA and other leaders, including Virginia Senator and former Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine have called for the establishment of refugee camps closer to the region.
Read more on this story at The Washington Post.
Updated: Fri, Sep 25th 2015 @ 10:05am EDT