What will Rex Tillerson as Sec. of State do on refugees? (No idea!)
Posted by Ann Corcoran on January 16, 2017
That is the question Daniel Horowitz asks at Conservative Review yesterday. He suggests that silence on the subject doesn’t bode well for those of us who know that the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program must be scrapped as written.
My reading of the Refugee Act of 1980 is that the program is almost completely under the power of the President and Congress “consults,” but definitely does not set the numbers and the regions of the world from which we take refugees.
Here is what Horowitz says:
Given that Rex Tillerson is the first secretary of State nominee with absolutely no political or military experience, we have no clue where he stands on many critical geopolitical issues. After this week’s hearing, which was almost completely consumed with Russia and random Democrat priorities, he is still very much a blank slate, including on the all-important issue of refugees.
One of the most important issues within the purview of the secretary of State is refugee resettlement in general and the UN’s Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in particular. Although the secretary of DHS is widely viewed as the point-man on the issue of immigration, the secretary of State is the gatekeeper. The State Department works with the UN to identify the pool of refugees and bring them to our shores.
A secretary of State who has his priorities straight would serve as a positive influence on Trump and urge him to shut down or curtail the program in the face of pressure from the global elites. On the other hand, a secretary of State who subscribes to the views of James Baker, Condi Rice, Bob Corker, and Robert Gates — all strong backers of Tillerson — could serve as a major negative influence on the president-elect.
With all the negative energy that will inevitably swarm Trump on behalf of Islamic refugee resettlement, a secretary of State with anything short of a full-throated opposition to this program will become a problem in the long run.
The point is we can’t merely hope for change on immigration; we have to ensure and demand it. While repeal of Obamacare has unfortunately turned out to be needlessly complex and uncertain, the repeal of refugee resettlement is very straightforward and does not require any complicated legislation. It would be nice if we had a sense of where this administration is headed. Radio silence on these issues seldom portends a strong change in a conservative direction. [I am not a lawyer, but I think “repeal” of the Act would require Congress, but halting the program is in Trump’s power. After ‘pausing’ the program, Trump should make Congress repeal or reform it. The pause itself would be the hammer. Otherwise, when Trump leaves office in 4-8 years they could all just go back to the same old program.—ed]
Continue reading here.
Here are my thoughts in no particular order:
~I tell everyone who will listen that we can fix things like Obamacare in due time, but we can never fix the demographic changes we make every day through uncontrolled illegal and LEGAL immigration. And, Trump voters recognized that and thus immigration must be the first priority of this new administration.
~Trump can and should ‘pause’ the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program on day one. Congress can not stop him! In 1980, Ted Kennedy, Joe Biden and Jimmy Carter put the power in the hands of the President to set the numbers and the nationalities.
~Some are suggesting he only pause refugees from terror-exporting regions of the world, but I believe it is politically easier to pause the whole thing. Also, I don’t have enough confidence in new Trump people to understand that although Burma (for instance) isn’t considered a terror-exporting center, we do bring unable-to-be-vetted Rohingya Muslims from that region. We also pick up some Somalis in Europe, and so I believe it will be too hard to define those terror-exporting areas of the world. And, certainly he shouldn’t admit those in the Obama Australia deal.
~That said, I’m giving him a few weeks to get it done, but know that we are adding 285 refugees to your towns and cities every day that he delays. See here. ***Update*** Daily average has dropped to 257, here.
~Congress did give the Administration more funding for the higher number of refugees coming, but a big chunk of it does not become available until February 17th, so it is important to stop the flow before that date.
~We have had no word on it, but Asst. Sec. of State Anne Richard and Director of ORR Bob Carey should be packing up their offices this week, if they haven’t already. Who the Trump team places in those two positions will tell us where Tillerson and Rep. Tom Price (HHS nominee) are on refugees.
~If Trump pauses now we will already have over 30,000 refugees admitted in the first three months of the 2017 fiscal year. Obama set the level for this year at 110,000, but Trump has no obligation to honor that HUGE number.
~The resettlement contractors will moan and wail because their federal funding depends on numbers they place. Certain members of Congress, including many Republican ‘leaders,’ will scream bloody murder as well (they want cheap immigrant labor!). But, frankly, if Congress thinks it is in our interests to continue taking refugees the UN is pushing on us, let them work on a reform of the program!
Because they are so fearful of being called names, they will never do it unless Donald Trump forces them to!
By the way, when the Bush Administration dramatically reduced the number of refugees coming in 2002 and 2003 (9/11 scared them), they conspired with the resettlement contractors to give them funding to keep their doors open even when they had so many fewer refugees to place. This writer has no sympathy for them, let them raise private money from private ‘humanitarians’ to pay their rent!
Or, heck, maybe the big globalist meatpackers and food processing companies like Chobani Yogurt can pay them to keep their doors open!
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