Some Badly Needed Perspective
Regardless of where you stand in the political divide, you will find this article of interest assuming you are interested in facts.
Nor is what Trump has done particularly unusual, let alone extreme.
The countries involved in the 90-day suspension — Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen — weren’t named in Trump’s executive order. They were listed by the Obama administration as countries of special concern under a 2015 law that requires anyone who even visited one of these terror-prone countries to undergo special scrutiny before coming to the U.S. — even if they hail from a country that otherwise doesn’t require a visa to visit the U.S.
President Obama himself barred large groups of immigrants from entering the U.S. at least six times out of national security concerns, according to a review last June by the Washington Examiner. In 2011, the administration suspended refugee processing from Iraq for six months to make sure terrorists weren’t exploiting the program.
The Examiner also found that “President Bill Clinton issued six immigrant bans; George W. Bush six immigrant bans; and former President Ronald Reagan four. And in 1980, former President Jimmy Carter banned Iranians after Tehran seized the U.S. embassy.”
Nor is Trump’s refugee cap in any way draconian. Data from the Migration Policy Institute shows that, while the cap was higher under the previous two presidents, the actual number of refugees admitted over the past 15 years has been at or below 50,000 most of the time. In fact, the average number of refugees admitted under Bush was 48,000 a year.
In any case, Trump’s halt to Syrian refugees won’t make a difference one way or another in the Syrian refugee crisis. In the five years after the Syrian war started in 2011, Obama had admitted all of 1,883 Syrian refugees. Obama’s highly controversial decision last year to let in 13,000 didn’t make a dent in the 4 million-plus Syrian refugee population.
What’s extreme isn’t what Trump did, it’s the entirely out-of-proportion reaction from his political opponents, the press, and many weak-kneed Republicans.
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