President Trump has got his hands full these days with the nomination of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the ongoing war with obstructionist Democrats. But he makes time for a slew of other issues as well. I sincerely mean it when I say that I can’t remember the last time a president got so much done regardless of pushback. Not since Reagan have I seen such a desire to set things right.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo just announced that the U.S. will cap incoming refugees over the next fiscal year at 30,000. That’s significantly down from the previous 45,000 refugee cap and it is the fewest allowed in since the 1980 Refugee Act. Trump is removing one-third of the allowed refugees into the U.S. per year. That’s unprecedented.
This is the third curtailment on the yearly refugee cap since President Trump came into office. Pompeo said the reduction was a necessity so that we could deal with the backlog of 800,000 currently pending asylum seekers.
“In consideration of both U.S. national security interest and the urgent need to restore integrity to our overwhelmed asylum system, the United States will focus on addressing the humanitarian protection cases of those already in the country,” Pompeo said, according to the Washington Post.
“We proposed resettling up to 30,000 refugees under the new refugee ceiling as well as processing more than 280,000 asylum seekers,” Pompeo said in an announcement at the State Department, calling the United States “the most generous nation in the world when it comes to protection-based immigration.”
“This year’s proposed refugee ceiling must be considered in the context of the many other forms of protection and assistance offered by the United States,” he said.”
Currently, international law requires us to admit asylum seekers. First off, I don’t know why we feel bound by that law… we do not answer to the international court and it should be a case-by-case decision. The law does, however, allow judges to reject the cases of asylum seekers once they have been admitted into the country and deport them. Refugees are kept outside of the U.S. while their cases are processed.
While the current cap is definitely a significant reduction from last year, it should be noted that fewer than 20,000 refugees have been admitted to the U.S. during the current fiscal year. It is extremely unlikely that number will grow enough to reach this year’s cap of 45,000 refugees. There is only one month left as I understand it in this fiscal year that will count additional refugees.
Much of this is due to President Trump implementing much tougher screening processes for refugees. That is a very good thing. They were meant to stop terrorists from gaining entry into the U.S. and it’s working. But it also means that the asylum application’s process takes much longer to go through and that is causing a backlog.
“Pompeo said the U.S. will likely process approximately 310,000 refugee and asylum applications over the 2019 fiscal year in addition to the cases already pending.
“He also asserted that the refugee cap should not be considered the “sole barometer” of U.S. aid to refugees.
“[We will] target the application of foreign aid in a smarter way,” Pompeo said, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“The secretary of state said the U.S. would focus on ending conflicts driving the refugee crisis, helping refugees to return to their home countries, and promoting the sharing of the refugee crisis burden among countries.
“The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said that there are 25.4 million people who are displaced outside of their own countries, 3.1 million asylum seekers and a total of 68.5 million people displaced worldwide, the majority of whom are displaced within their own countries.
“Humanitarian organizations like Amnesty International criticized the U.S.’ lowered refugee caps.
“The Trump administration is abandoning this country’s promise to refugees,” Amnesty International said in a statement.
“Today’s announcement demonstrates another undeniable political attack against people who have been forced to flee their homes. This is the lowest goal in the history of the program and compounded by this administration’s history of creating road block after road block for refugees to arrive, this must be perceived as an all-out attack against our country’s ability to resettle refugees both now and in the future,” the statement added.”
President Trump is not abandoning any promise. He’s just keeping that promise in a way that protects Americans. The U.N. is not the boss of us. We do not answer to them and as a sovereign body, we are not obligated to take in refugees. This is not a one world order yet and President Trump is admirably standing up to these tyrants. He’s to be commended on cutting the refugee numbers like this.