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Cuomo: It’s Not Up to States to Block Syrian Refugees

By Staff


GovHarvard1280Gov. Andrew Cuomo said it’s not up to governors to decide whether states should accept Syrian refugees Tuesday, in an address at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership.

According to Cuomo, it’s a job for the federal government.

“How? How? Where does it say in the state constitution ‘you can refuse a person placed by the federal government?’” the governor asked. “What are you going to do, have your militia fight the federal government, at the borders of your state? It’s a pure political statement.”

Twenty-eight governors, in the aftermath of last week’s terrorist attacks in Paris, have currently asked the federal government not to place Syrian refugees in their states.

All but one of the governors have been Republican.

Cuomo has accused the governors of political posturing, and said they’ve made the statements in order to get votes.

“This is an election season, so the silly season has started,” the governor stated.

Cuomo also said protecting the country requires balance, so we don’t “lose our soul as America.”

“The day America says ‘close the gates, build the wall,’ then I say take down the Statue of Liberty, because you’ve gone to a different place,” he stated.

Ultimately, Cuomo said, it’s up to the federal government to decide whether migrants from Syria can be screened effectively.

“This federal government needs to make sure it’s doing the screening, and the people that are coming in are safe, and the federal government has to say, “we are capable of doing that,” the governor stated.

According to Cuomo, if the federal government’s position is that the U.S. can screen well, then states will be able to screen effectively.