With several GOP governors calling to stop Syrian refugees from entering their states in the wake of the Paris attacks, one Republican leader in Tennessee wants to take that matter further: He says the National Guard should round up the refugees and return them to federal immigration centers.
“We need to activate the Tennessee National Guard and stop them from coming in to the state by whatever means we can,” House Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada of the Nashville suburb of Franklin told The Tennessean for Wednesday’s editions. He said the Guard should “politely” take the Syrian refugees already in the state to federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement centers and tell the officials there, “They’re not coming to Tennessee, they’re yours.”
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is among the governors who want to delay or stop accepting Syrian refugees. But the Republican on Wednesday urged moderation.
“We must not lose ourselves in the process,” Haslam said. “If we abandon our values by completely shutting our doors to those who seek the freedom we enjoy or mistreating our neighbors who made it here after enduring unimaginable hardships, the terrorists win.”
State Department Spokesman John Kirby called the idea of rounding up refugees “deeply troubling,” and said Secretary of State John Kerry had made clear in recent days that such a proposal was “certainly not in keeping with the best of American values.”
The federal government controls resettlement programs, and states have no authority to bar refugees from moving to their jurisdictions.
But Casada argued: (continue reading)