Blumenauer Statement on Donald Trump’s Executive Order to Turn Away Immigrants from Predominantly Muslim Countries & Refugees

January 27, 2017
Press Release

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-03) released the following statement on Donald Trump’s executive order to block visas for anyone traveling to the United States from seven predominantly Muslim countries, including Syria; and to ban refugees from entering the United States.

“Attempts by Donald Trump to relate our national security issues to refugee resettlement or religious beliefs are unsettling — and very dangerous. Terrorism is not confined to a specific group or religion. Rather, it relies on the belief that the use of hate and violence, or threats of violence, can achieve a political end.

“Our nation thrives when people of many cultures, and religions stand together. No individual should be discriminated against because of religious beliefs—or lack of religious beliefs. Turning away from an entire population due to broad-brush characterizations of those who practice a certain faith goes against our core values as a nation.

“Some of the individuals this order would turn away are threatened allies who have worked with the U.S. government on the ground helping Americans and are seeking refuge in our country through the Iraqi Special Immigrant Visa program, a program I helped establish. We have a moral obligation to keep our commitment to those who risked their lives to help us.

“Further, the situation of refugee families displaced from their homes and forced to start new lives is heartbreaking. We make ourselves less secure by allowing vulnerable populations to continue living in extreme poverty and terror. The United States has a proud tradition of offering protection and a new life to those fleeing persecution and war. We should lead by example to provide help to refugees, while rallying other countries to also assist.

“I will continue to fight against discrimination and work to promote religious freedom and protect human rights at home and abroad.”