LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Patrick Colbeck, R-Canton, introduced a resolution calling on Gov. Rick Snyder to continue his opposition to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Michigan until the state is sufficiently assured that the federal government is properly vetting the refugees against any terrorists infiltrating the U.S. through the resettlement program.
“We are not seeking a ban on resettling refugees in Michigan, but rather a pause in the process until we are certain that the process for vetting them is sufficient to protect our citizens,” Colbeck said. “For those who are truly seeking refuge from a dangerous situation, there are other options available to us right now including Safe Zones in their own countries and nearby countries. For those who are looking for a better life in America and wish to assimilate into our ‘Great Melting Pot,’ we welcome their immigration through the resettlement process once it has been proven safe.”
The resolution notes that the president has issued an executive order increasing the intake of refugees from Syria to 10,000 and seeks to resettle Syrians in communities across the United States.
However, terrorists loyal to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham in Syria — commonly known as ISIS — have recently expanded their campaign from the war-torn streets of Syria to all nations, including the most recent attack in San Bernardino, California.
Colbeck also said that by increasing the intake of refugees, the president has given individuals who have adopted the teachings and ideology of ISIS a clear path into the United States. FBI Director James Comey admits that “there are certain gaps … in the information available to us” when speaking about the process by which refugees are screened to prevent the resettlement of individuals with ties to ISIS.
“As the frequency and severity of ISIS attacks increase, measures are needed to protect the citizens of Michigan and the United States. Governor Snyder was correct in suspending the Syrian resettlement program in Michigan in the wake of ISIS’s attacks on Paris,” Colbeck said. “Suspending this program has made our state more secure and efforts must continue to be made to ensure our security.
“We appreciate how the governor has taken the lead not only in Michigan but across the nation on the need to protect our citizens from a resettlement process that even leading members of the president’s administration have admitted is riddled with information gaps. Ultimately, the security of our state is a partnership between the governor and the Legislature. My fellow legislators and I look forward to continuing that partnership in a fiscally responsible and secure manner that promotes the most honorable values of Michigan citizens.”
The full text of the resolution can be found here: Syrian Refugee Resolution.