Senate GOP: Stop Syrian refugee acceptance over fake passports
© Getty Images
A group of Republican senators wants the Obama administration to stop admitting Syrian refugees, saying terrorists can use the program to sneak into the country. 
 
Republican Sens. Mark Kirk (Ill.), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Bill Cassidy (La.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), Roger Wicker (Miss.), Steve Daines (Mont.), James Inhofe (Okla.) and Mike Enzi (Wyo.) sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Department of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, suggesting that terrorists could use fake Syrian passports to travel to the United States. 
 
ADVERTISEMENT
"The threat to the United States posed by ISIS-created Syrian passports is now imminent. That danger will continue to grow so long as our enemies are able to perfect these passports and exploit loopholes in refugee programs," they wrote in the letter sent Thursday and obtained by The Hill. 
 
They point to an ABC News report that Homeland Security investigations officials found that "it is possible that individuals from Syria with passports ‘issued’ in these ISIS-controlled cities or who had passport blanks, may have traveled to the U.S."  
 
The senators say that Syrian refugee acceptance should be paused until the administration has a "credible plan" to identify fake Syrian passports and can certify that the refugees aren't a national security threat. 
 
They added that doing anything else is "an unacceptable risk to the safety of our country" and there is "no room for error."
 
Republicans have been pushing the administration to pause the acceptance of Syrian, as well as Iraqi, refugees over concerns that Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) members could get into the country and carry out terrorist attacks similar to the those in Paris last year. 
 
But the issue has largely stalled in Congress after Senate Democrats blocked a House-passed bill to crack down on refugees over a fight to get an amendment on Donald Trump's push to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the country.
 
This story was updated at 4:10 p.m.