Gov. Snyder and the Refugee Program
Governor Snyder is still concerned about the refugee program. According to the Detroit Free Press, Governor Snyder’s administration just yesterday released a letter he sent to Secretary of State John Kerry and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. In that letter he asked that President Obama’s administration include the 10-member Council of Governors, which is an advisory board that Snyder belongs to, as well as state police agencies and homeland security experts to discuss questions regarding the safety of the refugee resettlement program.
He is quoted in the Detroit Free Press article saying:
"With these experts in the room, I am confident that we can engage in a deep dialogue on the effectiveness of the vetting process. "Further, I would like to expand the discussion to include enhanced communication between federal, state, and local government officials to ensure the public is well informed about the fidelity of the screening process for all individuals who wish to come to America."
You should know that Governor Snyder was the first of what later came to be more than two dozen governors to raise questions about the security of the nation's refugee resettlement program in the wake of the Nov. 13 Paris attacks in which more than 130 people were killed.
We should be proud that our governor was quick to acknowledge and recognize this concern and possible danger.
Earlier this week the White House offered Governor Snyder and other governors more access to information about refugees resettled in their states.
The problem with their offer is the information will not be provided to the Governors until after the refugees are already resettled in their states.
How does that help us?
Remember there are some federal officials, those include Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and FBI Director James Comey, who have stated that there are “challenges” in vetting the background of some Middle Eastern refugees because countries like Syria don't share information with the United States.
I also want to inform you that Michigan has taken in more Syrians and Iraqis than almost any other state in the nation since the beginning of 2013. The available data from the State Department states that of the 2,225 Syrians resettled in the U.S., 211 came to Michigan, trailing only California (243) and Texas (236). In terms of Iraqi refugees, only the state of California, with 7,602, has received more than Michigan’s 6,660.
I believe that the governors of these states should be concerned about the refugee resettlement program because their first goal should be to protect the citizens of their states.
Let’s discuss this today on my program, The Live with Renk show, which airs Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to noon, to let me know your thoughts at (269) 441-9595.
Or please feel free to start a discussion and write your thoughts in the comment section.