Refugee Resettlement Watch

Archive for the ‘Reforms needed’ Category

Babin Bill to suspend Refugee Admissions Program has 74 co-sponsors as they get on board after Paris

Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 18, 2015

brian babinRep. Brian Babin (R-TX) first proposed his bill, here, last summer.  Events in Paris over the weekend on top of news accounts generally of the European invasion by Middle Eastern and African migrants have resulted in increased attention to the measure.

Go here for a list of co-sponsors of HR 3314.

Is your member on the bill yet?


Time is of the essence as the Federation for American Immigration Reform tells us this (click here):

Even though the Babin approach is the only way to ensure that our refugee program will not be exploited, House GOP leadership appears to be taking a different approach. Instead, they have scheduled a vote TOMORROW on a flawed bill that will do absolutely nothing to stop or defund refugee resettlement. Authored by Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC), the bill merely calls for the administration to certify that any refugees brought here from Iraq and Syria are not terrorists.

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | Tagged: | 4 Comments »

What would I ask Republican Presidential candidates tonight?

Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 10, 2015

Someone asked me to prepare a list of questions I might ask Republican candidates tonight in Milwaukee.  So I wrote up a quick list and thought I would share them with you.  Now mind you, there is no way that anyone would ever ask the candidates if they would scratch the whole darn Refugee Admissions Program, so that is not one of my questions.


Republican debate

Republicans on stage at the earlier CNN debate….


There is no particular order of imporance with my ten quick questions below!  And, I am sure you all could come up with many I haven’t thought of.  Send comments and tell us yours!

1) The Obama Administration has said recently that it will admit 10,000 Syrians in the fiscal year 2016 resettlement of 85,000 third world refugees to American towns and cities in 48 states, yet the Director of the FBI James Comey recently told Congress that the Syrians, coming from a failed state, could not be properly screened. In this battle between the US State Department (that wants many more than 10,000), and the FBI (Homeland Security concerned with the possible infiltration of ISIS in the refugee population), how would you bring your cabinet together on this critical issue?

2) The Center for Immigration Studies recently released a new study which finds that a Syrian family of four resettled in America will cost US taxpayers over a quarter of a million dollars over five years. Would that factor figure into your decision on how many refugees America can afford because it is the President who has almost exclusive power for determining refugee numbers and makes that determination every September?

3) Recently Senator Jeff Sessions office released data on welfare use of refugees in America and found that 90% of Middle Eastern refugees were using some form of social services—food stamps, cash assistance, Medicaid and so forth—and that rate was higher for that group than refugees from elsewhere in the world. There are also reports of widespread fraud in the welfare application process. What would you do to discourage fraud and limit welfare for all classes of immigrant?

4) The United Nations is choosing most refugees admitted to the US (over 20,000 Syrians have been referred by the UN) and 97% of the Syrians chosen thus far have been Muslims who are presently housed in UN camps. Would you go against the UN and seek out Christian and other religious minorities in need of resettlement as a first priority?

5) In 2014, the US admitted 67% of the refugees that were resettled anywhere, the next highest country was Canada with 9%. If you were President would you urge a more equitable distribution to first world countries?

6) The world is watching in horror as Europe is being inundated with tens of thousands of migrants. Approximately 8,000 are arriving in Germany each day (originally welcomed by the government). Only about half are Syrians and the largest percentage are economic migrants, not legitimate refugees. If you, as President, had a private meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel, what would you say to her?

7) The refugees being housed presently in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan will be there temporarily, perhaps years, but they will not be given citizenship rights. Those resettled to the US and other western countries are permanent residents on a track to citizenship. What alternative would you suggest for managing, especially the Syrian flow, short of making tens of thousands of them US citizens?

8) Our present system of resettling refugees is virtually controlled by the UN, the US State Department and nine federal contractors which monopolize the resettlement of refugees and even choose the towns and cities where they will go. In a ______Administration would you seek to reform this out-of-control resettlement program and give some authority to state and local elected officials which virtually have none right now?

Would your administration propose or support existing reform legislation?

9) Non-profit organizations affiliated with some religious denominatons are being paid millions of tax dollars each year to bring refugee families to cities of their choosing and in three to six months that family is expected to be on its own and the non-profit then brings in the next group incentivized by a federal payment that is calculated by the head (per refugee). Would you pledge to reform the program to put more responsibility back on to private charity as the original act of 1980 invisioned?

10) There have been many reports recently of school systems overloaded with needy immigrant students who require extra help with learning English and to deal with mental traumas, would your administration seek a moratorium on resettlement until officials in overloaded cities and local and state taxpayers could catch their breath?

Don’t hold your breath!  I would be blown away if there is any question relating to refugees tonight in Milwaukee, even though, as I said in my previous post this morning—immigration is THE issue for 2016!

Posted in 2016 Presidential campaign, Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | 3 Comments »

Resistance growing to refugee resettlement as federal program “cost shifts” expenses to state and local taxpayers

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 9, 2015

Fox News reporter, Melissa Jacobs, posted a very useful piece earlier this week entitled, ‘Obama’s refugee resettlement plan could stir battle with states.

Here is a bit that interested me (be sure to read the whole thing because she mentions several states and local communities resisting the resettlement of more refugees.  See if your city or state gets a mention!).

The Obama administration’s pledge to absorb thousands more Syrian and other refugees could run headlong into resistance from state and local officials worried about whether their communities can handle the influx.


“It’s a fiscal issue,” said Peter Steele, a spokesman for Maine Gov. Paul LePage. “You can only pay for what you can afford, and those funds should be going to the most needy citizens in our state.”

Don Barnett

Center for Immigration Studies Fellow, Don Barnett: Time for refugee program to come out of the shadows.


…. pushback from the states could pose practical challenges.

According to a 1980 law, states can opt out of the program and need to be consulted in the process. However, Don Barnett, a fellow with the Center for Immigration Studies, describes refugee resettlement as a “secretive” and lucrative business for “non-profits” who operate with little coordination with state and local communities.

“In every encounter I’ve had with resettlement representatives, they will say if the locality doesn’t want it, we won’t resettle them — but this hasn’t been tested,” Barnett said.

Concern about the funding burden falling on local governments is hardly new.

The 1981 Select Commission on Immigration and Refugee Policy noted, “Many state and local officials are concerned that the costs of resettlement assistance will continue beyond the period of federal reimbursement and that the burden of providing services will then fall upon their governments.”

“There is a complete cost shift to the states,” Barnett said.

Indeed, federal funding, extended for 36 months at the beginning of the program, dropped to the current eight-month period by 1991. The Heritage Foundation estimates the total lifetime cost of government benefits at $6.5 billion per 10,000 refugees.

See Julia Hahn at Breitbart, here, for more on the Heritage Foundation study.

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Pockets of Resistance, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Resettlement cities, Taxpayer goodies | Tagged: | 8 Comments »

House Judiciary Committee refugee oversight hearing postponed

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 6, 2015

I was planning to give you the witness list for the House Judiciary Committee hearing tomorrow when I saw the notice that it has been postponed, click here.

The witness list isn’t too exciting anyway.  When I learn more, will let you know.

For those who missed the Senate hearing last week, go here.

Posted in Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Taxpayer goodies | Tagged: | 9 Comments »

Senate Oversight hearing on Refugee Program very revealing! Senator Sessions did a masterful job

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 2, 2015

For all of you who had to do something productive yesterday afternoon, like go to work! here is a link to the C-span video of the hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest that ran a little over two hours.

FILE - In this Jan. 30, 2013 file photo, Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala. speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. Senators weighing a landmark immigration bill defeated an effort by Republicans Tuesday to require biometric identification _ such as fingerprinting _ to track who is entering and leaving the country. The amendment by Sessions would have required a biometric system to be in place before any immigrant here illegally could obtain permanent residency or citizenship. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

Senator Jeff Sessions, Chairman Judiciary Subcommittee Immigration and the National Interest

As far as we can tell this is the first Congressional oversight hearing held on the refugee program since 911!

Everyone in Pockets of Resistance’ must watch it!  You will learn so much!

See our post here on the hearing so you know the background and who the players are.

I’ve got way too much to do before I leave for travel today, but there are a few things that interested me (among many!) that I want to draw your attention to when you watch the video.

If any readers would like to write a short commentary on what you found most informative/shocking or whatever, please send it my way and I’ll post when I return from Tennessee.

Below, not necessarily in order either time-wise or in importance.  (If anyone has time to send me the time stamps for these exchanges, I would be very grateful.)

Somali fraud!

Witness Barbara Strack (USCIS) actually mentioned the widespread fraud discovered in the family reunification portion of the program back in 2008.  She deserves credit for mentioning it, but of course most listeners probably did not know what she was talking about.  This was in response to Senator Blumenthal (D-CT) suggesting family reunification be expanded.

Here is the background!  First revealed by the Wall Street Journal in 2008, the US State Department learned that thousands of Somali refugees had entered the US by lying on their applications about family relationships.  The so-called P-3 program was suspended for years as a result!  None of the fraudulent entrants were ever deported.  Go here to see links for the news.

So all the discussion about “interviews” as part of the process of gaining entry into the US is suspect because, guess what!  They lie!

Consultation is a joke!

Near the end of the hearing, Senator Sessions asked about whether there was consultation with the communities that would be receiving the refugees, and Lawrence Bartlett (US State Department) said with a straight face that there are quarterly consultations with stakeholders and elected officials.

He did not mention that the taxpaying public is prohibited from attending!  He did not mention that if elected officials are hostile, they aren’t invited.  He did not mention that in many communities there is no quarterly meeting.  He did not mention that the meeting usually only involves ‘stakeholders’ that are friendlies.  Go here to a post we wrote in May about the efforts by citizens in St. Cloud, MN to get into a ‘quarterly consultation’ (while ‘leaders of the Somali ‘community’ had been invited), but were told initially that they were not permitted to attend.  (After a public outcry, a few representatives of the concerned public did eventually gain entry to a sanitized meeting.)

They really don’t know who the Syrians are!

Perhaps the most embarrassing moments of the hearing for witnesses were when Mr. Matthew Emrich (Associate Director, Fraud Detection And National Security Directorate of the USCIS) could not tell Senator Sessions how they could possibly collect data on the Syrians who have left their failed state.  When we get a bit of the video pulled for that exchange, we’ll link it. ***Update*** here (thanks to reader Robin) is the exchange between Senator Sessions and Mr. Emrich.

Boston Bombers exchange

If you were confused by the exchange on the Tsarnaev (Boston Bomber family) and Ms. Strack’s assertion that they were not “refugees,” she was technically correct.  We bring refugees into the country after we/UNHCR select them.

It was widely reported after the bombing that the family had been granted asylum (under the provisions of the Refugee Act of 1980). That means that one of them (the Dad we suspect) got into the US through some other means (perhaps overstayed a tourist visa) and applied for asylum and was successful and thus was allowed to bring in the family.  As asylees (successful asylum seekers) they are then generally referred to as ‘political refugees’ and can (and did!) avail themselves of all the same welfare goodies that refugees receive.

The fact that they were travelling back and forth to their place of supposed persecution should have been a red-flag to immigration officials.

Senator Sessions needs to press Ms. Strack further in follow-up questions to identify the exact LEGAL program the Tsarnaev’s used to enter the country, unless, and this would be headline news, they were here illegally (and being supported on the taxpayer’s dime).

See also, Brenda Walker’s take on the hearing, here at Limits to Growth (she posted Senator Sessions wrap-up statement).

I’ll add additional media reports here as they come in today (before I leave if possible).

Be sure to see Leo Hohmann at WND here on the hearing.

Posted in Obama, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | Tagged: , | 17 Comments »

House to hold hearing next week on Refugee Admissions Program (Obama’s Syrians)

Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 1, 2015

The Senate hearing is today, see here.

And, next week the House of Representatives (full Judiciary Committee) will hold a hearing as well.  As soon as we learn who the witnesses will be, we will let you know.

We have been telling you for weeks that the House and Senate Judiciary Committees are required to hold hearings on the Presidential Determination for the upcoming year, but as far as I can tell, no hearing has been held since 911.  I think this year they could hardly shirk their duty because the public is up-in-arms over the plan to bring in thousands of not-properly-screened Syrians.

Here is the entire press release, yesterday:


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 30, 2015 CONTACT: Kathryn Rexrode or Jessica Collins, (202) 225-3951

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.


Trey Gowdy is chairman of the Immigration and Border Control Subcommittee and represents Spartanburg, SC, a hotbed of opposition to refugee resettlement. We have maintained that he could be doing more to take a leadership role on the issue that we feel is the most important one this country faces since its founding. How many immigrants are we going to admit, and from where will they come, will determine America’s future. It would be nice to solve the Benghazi riddle, but it won’t make or break America—immigration very well could! BTW, Is Gowdy staying or leaving? See rumors here:

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 Camera crews wishing to cover must be congressionally-credentialed and RSVP with the House Radio-TV Gallery at (202) 225-5214.

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Muslim refugees, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Action Alert! If you live in the DC area and are concerned about the refugee problem, please attend the Senate hearing

Posted by Ann Corcoran on September 30, 2015

jeff Sessions

The Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest is chaired by Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

You know the community activists who are already upset that Obama wants to admit (only!) 85,000 refugees to the US starting tomorrow while they want 200,000, will be crowding in to the Refugee Resettlement oversight hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

They have lots of community (open borders) agitators, paid employees and interns in the DC area to make it look like a big crowd in support of MORE refugees.

So, if you live nearby please try to make it to the hearing.  Go to our previous post for all the details about who will be answering the committee’s questions.

If your US Senator is on the Subcommittee (list here) be sure to let him/her know how you feel about more refugees for America and for your state.

This is all you will need for tomorrow:

DATE: Thursday October 1, 2015

TIME: 2:00 p.m.

WHERE: Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 226

Doors to the room usually don’t open until 15 minutes prior to the hearing start time. You can get into the Dirksen Office Building as early as you want and wait in the hallway out side the hearing room. But please be aware that Capitol Police will not let you sit in the hallway.

The two closest metro stops to the Dirksen Senate Office building are Union Station (Red line) and Capitol South Metro (Blue, Orange and Silver lines).

Posted in Obama, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Taxpayer goodies | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Senate “oversight” hearing scheduled this week on the Refugee Admissions Program

Posted by Ann Corcoran on September 28, 2015

Don’t get me wrong, I am thrilled that some Congressional committee is attempting to review the UN/US State Department Refugee Admissions Program and as far as I can tell, it will be the first time Congress takes seriously its “consultation” responsibility since before 911.  That said, as I review the list of those testifying, do the Senators really think they will get anything but a snow-job from two of those on the list of entrenched bureaucrats (Bartlett and Carey) who have every incentive to keep the monster going.

Bartlett with map

Do Senators really think that Asst. Sec. of State Anne Richard’s right hand man (Larry Bartlett pictured here) is going to tell the Senators anything negative about how refugees are resettled in America. By the way, see the newest version of that map behind him, here:

Just last week Lawrence Bartlett traveled to Twin Falls, Idaho to participate in a laughable demonstration of a stacked public “forum” to attempt to quell the citizen criticism of the program there in Magic Valley.  Watch Bartlett in action here.

I do need to comb through that entire video and pull out some Bartlett gems for you.  When I posted on the “forum” here I hadn’t watched the videotape, so to clarify: Bartlett didn’t say they don’t drop off refugees in unwelcoming towns, he actually (with a malevolent look) said “unsafe” towns implying that opponents of refugee resettlement might be violent people!  It is an outrage!

Also, when asked why local citizens don’t have more say in who and how many will be resettled, he made it clear that this was designed as a federal program administered from Washington (so tough luck to local communities, we call the shots).  He didn’t exactly say it that way, but that was the clear message he was sending.

***Update*** Jim sends this link for the segment of Bartlett’s remarks just mentioned. More great information on the Twin Falls “forum” from opponents, here.

The Refugee Act of 1980 (Kennedy, Biden, Carter) does require consultation with local elected officials, something that is done (if at all) in the most cursory fashion and with local ‘friendly’ officials first and foremost.

Anyway, back to the hearing for October 1 (the first day of the 2016 fiscal year where 10,000 or more Syrian, mostly Muslim, refugees will be on the way to these towns and more).

Will those testifying say anything more than all is well, every town is welcoming, Syrians will be screened, blah, blah, blah.

I would like to have seen a mayor*** with problems be among the witnesses.

I’m told if you go to the Judiciary Committee website at the time of the hearing you can watch it live.

Oversight of the Administration’s FY 2016 Refugee Resettlement Program: Fiscal and Security Implications

Immigration and the National Interest
Date: Thursday, October 1, 2015 Add to my Calendar
Time: 02:00 PM
Location: Dirksen Senate Office Building 226
Presiding: Chairman Sessions

September 21, 2015


The Senate Committee on the Judiciary has scheduled a hearing of the Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest entitled “Oversight of the Administration’s FY 2016 Refugee Resettlement Program: Fiscal and Security Implications” for Thursday October 1, 2015 at 2:00 p.m., in Room 226 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building.

By order of the Chairman.


Mr. Larry Bartlett
Director Of Admissions
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration | United States Department of State
Washington , D.C.

Ms. Barbara Strack
Chief, Refugee Affairs Division
United States Citizenship and Immigration Services | United States Department of Homeland Security
Washington , D.C.

Mr. Matthew Emrich
Associate Director, Fraud Detection And National Security Directorate
United States Citizenship and Immigration Services | United States Department of Homeland Security
Washington , D.C.

Mr. Robert Carey
Director, Office Of Refugee Resettlement
United States Department of Health and Human Services
Washington , D.C.

Incidentally, Carey is one of the many in federal government who rotated in from a contractor’s job.  Think about it, now he is the dispenser of federal grants to the contractor he once worked for—the International Rescue Committee.

***In Twin Falls, Bartlett did mention some cities where they have problems with mayors, but implied they had been resolved. (He also whacked the citizens of Spartanburg).  He said they had pushback from mayors in Manchester, NH, Amarillo, TX, and Springfield, Massachusetts—all three of which we have covered extensively on these pages.  

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Muslim refugees, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program, Taxpayer goodies | Tagged: , , | 14 Comments »

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman McCaul co-sponsors Babin bill!

Posted by Ann Corcoran on September 18, 2015

Update September 20th:  More excellent reporting on this by Leo Hohmann at World Net Daily, click here.

This is pretty big news!  Thanks to a tip from a friend, I checked the House website for bill status and see that Rep. Michael McCaul has become the 10th member to sign on to HR 3314 since we posted on the co-sponsors yesterday!


Rep. Michael McCaul called the Syrian refugee resettlement proposal a possible Jihadi pipeline to America.

See our post yesterday for the full story.

This is a significant addition to a bill introduced this summer by freshman Rep. Brian Babin of Texas and comes at a most critical time as Obama may dramatically increase the refugee flow of mostly Syrian Muslims to the US.

McCaul, who signed on yesterday, joins the following nine other co-sponsors.

Rep Burgess, Michael C. [TX-26] – 9/16/2015
Rep Gosar, Paul A. [AZ-4] – 9/15/2015
Rep Hice, Jody B. [GA-10] – 9/15/2015
Rep Jones, Walter B., Jr. [NC-3] – 9/15/2015
Rep King, Steve [IA-4] – 9/15/2015
Rep Sessions, Pete [TX-32] – 9/15/2015
Rep Weber, Randy K., Sr. [TX-14] – 9/15/2015
Rep Westmoreland, Lynn A. [GA-3] – 9/15/2015
Rep Zinke, Ryan K. [MT] – 9/15/2015

Is your member in this list?

Where are you Reps Bob Goodlatte and Trey Gowdy?  (For new readers these two members, as chairman and subcommittee chairman of the House Judiciary Committee are responsible for calling for hearings on the refugee program. So far crickets!)

See also:  Rep. Walter Jones says cut the funding!

Posted in Muslim refugees, Obama, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | Tagged: , , | 6 Comments »

Is Congress shirking its duty to America on refugee admissions? Yes, and has done so for more than 2 decades!

Posted by Ann Corcoran on September 14, 2015

Former Democratic Rep. Elizabeth Holtzman (December 1979):

“…there is no substitute for public scrutiny, public disclosure, public debate on an issue of such importance
as the admission of refugees to the United States.”

As far as we know, only Senator Grassley (Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee) has put out any statement about the Refugee “consultation” required by law that occurred on the Senate side of the Capitol last Wednesday.  Grassley’s statement is here.

***Update*** More here from Senator Grassley.


Where are you Trey Gowdy? As Chairman of the Immigration and Border Control Subcommittee in the House, you can do more to protect America by slowing the Syrian Muslim flow to our towns than you can ever do on Benghazi!

Where were the House Members, and why haven’t we heard from them yet? Where was Chairman Goodlatte and Subcommittee Chairman Trey Gowdy?

Some speculate that they have been told to stay quiet, don’t make a fuss until the Pope has come and gone! (Boehner again?)

Now, that is just speculation and if someone presents me with some facts about the House Judiciary position on the 10,000 Syrians (or more!) for FY2016 proposal by the President, let me know.    I do see this morning that Rep. Michael McCaul (Homeland Security Chairman) is blasting the number, but he is not on the committee responsible for addressing the Presidential Determination!

The Refugee Act of 1980 has a very specific time line for the President’s annual proposal for refugee admissions and the law calls for hearings now (here yesterday).  And, where is the report that is supposed to precede the consultation by two weeks?

I say if there are no public hearings, FY2016 admissions should be halted when the new fiscal year begins on October 1.

Has Congress been shirking its duty for decades?  

Sure looks like it!  Because of the proposals to bring in as many as 100,000 Syrians in the next 12 months, there must be hearings!  Come on Trey Gowdy!  Come on Bob Goodlatte! Where are you?

History tells us that the House (and the Senate) have been shirking their duties under the Refugee Act of 1980 for twenty years!

Take a trip down memory lane to the House debate on the ‘Immigration in the National Interest Act of 1995’ (HR2202) spearheaded by Rep. Lamar Smith and see what was said about the “consultation” process and how it has been ignored to America’s great detriment.

From House Report 104-469 (hat tip: Richard Falknor at Blue Ridge Forum).  Report is dated March 4, 1996.  Former Democratic Rep. Elizabeth Holtzman who was involved with the passage of the Refugee Act of 1980, as chairman of he immigration subcommittee, is quoted as confirming the importance of the consultation process and Congress’ role!

The Refugee Act of 1980 intended to provide Congress with a
meaningful role in the process of determining refugee
admissions. In the words of former Representative Elizabeth
Holtzman, then Chair of the House Subcommittee on Immigration,
Refugees and International Law, ``Importantly, for the first
time, the bill requires that Congress be consulted before
refugees are admitted, and spells out in detail the elements of
that consultation.” 55 Additionally, the Report of the
House Committee on the Judiciary regarding the Refugee Act of
1980 stated the following:
\55\ 125 Cong. Rec. H11966, H1167 (daily ed. Dec. 13, 1979)
(statement of Rep. Holtzman).

The Committee has made every effort to assure that
Congress has a proper and substantial role in all
decisions on refugee admissions. In the past, the
Attorney General’s consultation with this committee
regarding admissions has been merely a matter of
courtesy or custom. * * * The Committee cannot
overemphasize the importance it attaches to
consultation. The Congress is charged under the
Constitution with the responsibility for the regulation
of immigration, and this responsibility continues with
respect to refugee admissions.56
\56\ House Report 96-608 at 12-14 (1979).

In the past several years, the refugee consultation process
has devolved into a single meeting between the Executive Branch
and the House and Senate Judiciary Committees near the end of
the fiscal year–the very type of process which the 1980 Act
expressly rejected. As an example, the refugee consultation for
fiscal year 1996 occurred in the middle of September 1995–two
weeks prior to the beginning of fiscal year 1996. The failure
of the Administration to consult with Congress on the number
and allocation of refugee admissions until just prior to the
beginning of the fiscal year meant that the series of
discussions between the President and Congress called for in
section 207(d)(1) of the INA did not take place. [This is exactly what  is happening right now!—ed]

The current process of determining refugee admissions does
not provide Congress with a meaningful role in this process, as
intended in the Refugee Act of 1980. The number of refugee
admissions for a particular fiscal year should not be set
unilaterally by the President. As former Chairwoman Holtzman
stated: “* * * there is no substitute for public scrutiny,
public disclosure, public debate on an issue of such importance
as the admission of refugees to the United States.” 57
The only way to have an adequate public debate on the issue of
refugees is to give Congress a more meaningful role in
determining number and allocation of refugee admissions.
\57\ 125 Cong. Rec. H37203 (daily ed. Dec. 20, 1979).

So in conclusion, as the Refugee Act of 1980 intended, Congress is required to have a “meaningful” role in establishing refugee policy for the coming year and that includes a PUBLIC hearing!

It appears the last time either Judiciary Committee held required hearings on the annual refugee consultation was in 1999 (here).  If anyone can find a more recent hearing record, please send it. Why haven’t they been doing their jobs?

It seems that, just like everything else these days, this Republican Congress isn’t standing up for itself or for the American people! Just a bunch of chickens!

Go here to see who the members of the House Judiciary Committee are and here for the Senate Judiciary Committee.  Tell them they must hold hearings!

Posted in Changing the way we live, Colonization, Community destabilization, Muslim refugees, Reforms needed, Refugee Resettlement Program | Tagged: , | 28 Comments »


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