A Nebraska Congressman says Congress has an obligation to make sure the country is safe before it lets in Syrian refugees.
The United States House has approved a measure demanding stronger vetting before Syrian refugees enter the country.
“It pushes the pause button on resettling Syrian refugees in the country,” Congressman Jeff Fortenberry tells Kevin Thomas, host of Drive Time Lincoln on Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN.
Fortenberry says if the government cannot guarantee a terrorist won’t be among the refugees, none should be allowed in. It appears at least one of the terrorists in the Paris bombings entered Europe among Syrian refugees.
President Barack Obama has been harshly critical of Republicans pushing the measure, claiming they are scared of women and children.
Fortenberry calls Obama’s harsh criticism of the measure “unpresidential”.
“The president’s first job as well is to protect us. He tends to show more anger at conservatives than he does at jihadist terrorists,” according to Fortenberry. “This is a serious moment. People have been killed in an indiscriminate way in France.”
The measure passed easily, 289-to-137.
Fellow Republican, Adrian Smith, joined Fortenberry in voting for the bill.
Congressman Brad Ashford was among the 47 Democrats who joined 242 Republicans in supporting the measure which is opposed by President Barack Obama, a Democrat. Two Republicans voted against the bill.
The legislation comes in response to the terrorist attacks in Paris that killed nearly 130 and wounded hundreds more. The investigation into the attacks has led officials to believe at least one of the terrorists entered Europe through Greece with a group of Syrian refugees.
The legislation would require the head of Homeland security and the FBI as well as the national intelligence director to certify to Congress that each Syrian or Iraqi refugee entering the country poses no security threat.
The Obama Administration says the bill would create significant delays without enhancing meaningful additional security and the president has threatened to veto it should it make it to his desk. Democrats in the U.S. Senate have threatened to filibuster the measure.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]