Northwest Politicians Take Sides Over Syrian Refugees | KUOW News and Information

Northwest Politicians Take Sides Over Syrian Refugees

Nov 18, 2015

The debate about Syrian refugees continues to gain force. And more Northwest politicians are taking sides, as KUOW’s Liz Jones reports.


In Washington state, Republican Chris Vance is running to unseat U.S. Sen. Patty Murray. And on Tuesday, Vance joined a chorus of governors who want to block Syrian refugees from coming to their states.

Vance: “The president needs to stop, slow down and reassure everyone that you can keep people safe while also providing humanitarian assistance to these refugees.”

It’s possible one of the Paris attackers posed as a Syrian refugee to enter Europe.

And Vance, along with half the governors in the country, worry something similar could happen in the U.S. That’s even though the U.S. heavily screens refugees before they come here, something Europe has struggled to do.

Inslee: “We’re afraid and fear is a very powerful force.”

That’s Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.

Inslee: “I just disagree with a number of my gubernatorial colleagues who’ve pushed the panic button. Instead of really evaluating what the screening process is, they’ve decided just to shut the gates and I just don’t think that’s consistent with what America is about and what my state is about.”

According to State Department officials, refugees receive the most stringent security process for anyone who comes into the U.S.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown has said her state will continue to accept Syrian refugees.

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter wants to block them.

But they may have little say in the matter. Federal officials decide which refugees are admitted to the U.S., and where they are resettled.  I’m Liz Jones, KUOW News.