Tuesday, November 17, 2015
WASHINGTON, D.C. – This afternoon, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution condemning in the strongest terms the terrorist attacks in Paris, France, on November 13, 2015, that resulted in the loss of at least 129 lives. Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Virginia) today released the following statement regarding the recent terrorist attacks in Paris:
"The nation of France – America's first and enduring ally – suffered a devastating attack on Friday, and our hearts and prayers go out to her people in this time of mourning. We share our support for them as they work to find those responsible for the horrific acts of terror on Friday night, and we stand with them, resolute against these forces of evil that seek to destroy peace and prosperity in America and across the globe.
"Both ISIS and the Assad regime have subjected the Syrian people to unspeakable violence and terror, but we must remember that Congress has no greater responsibility under the Constitution than to protect the well-being of the American people. I have attended classified briefings on the attacks and how they impact the resettlement of refugees. I am very concerned about the effectiveness of our current screening process for refugees, as our intelligence and security leaders cannot say with certainty that an individual entering our country under refugee status poses no threat to our national security. Anyone, refugee or not, coming into this country must be fully and completely vetted if we are indeed serious about the security of our country. Given that our screening process is not nearly as adequate nor effective as it should be, it is imperative that we stop the intake of Syrian refugees at this time. And while we cannot justify the risks of admitting Syrian refugees without proper screening, we must maintain our ongoing commitment to provide humanitarian aid to innocent Syrians where we can and seek to assist them in seeking refuge in places closer to their homeland.
"Despite claiming that ISIS has been 'contained,' the President's claimed strategy to defeat ISIS has clearly been unsuccessful. ISIS has continued to grow and expand its reign of evil in part because America has failed to effectively lead on the world's stage. It is now incumbent upon the President to articulate a complete, thorough strategy to destroy ISIS. It is the Commander-in-Chief's responsibility alone to set forth to Congress and to the American people a comprehensive strategy for achieving this critical goal. Likewise, it is the obligation of the Congress to take up and debate the President's proposed Authorization for Use of Military Force. It is my fervent hope this Administration will swiftly develop a strategy for thoughtful and expeditious consideration by the American people."