Statement of Mary Meg McCarthy, Executive Director, National Immigrant Justice Center
With today’s revised executive order, the Trump administration admits that its original order blocking refugees and immigrants from Muslim-majority countries was a bad idea, yet continues to pursue unjust and ill-advised policies that will put thousands of men, women, and children’s lives in danger and cause other countries to view the United States with distrust. The new order is simply a modified refugee and Muslim ban, and a continuation of the Trump administration’s smear campaign against refugees and asylum seekers.
While the new order has remedied some of the original order’s egregious illegalities it continues to rely on a patently unlawful premise of discrimination based on national origin, targeting the Muslim-majority countries of Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen. For at least four months beginning March 16, the Trump administration will shut down the U.S. refugee program, ostensibly using that time to create more bureaucratic hurdles for people seeking safety from war, extreme violence, and persecution. As illuminated by the Department of Homeland Security's own analysis, this policy only serves to undermine U.S. national security and our country’s identity as a beacon of hope for the persecuted.