Democrats, advocates blast reported White House plan to cut refugee cap to zero

Democrats, advocates blast reported White House plan to cut refugee cap to zero
© Getty Images

Democratic presidential contenders and others spoke out against reports during the weekend that the Trump administration will seek to cut refugee admissions to zero next year.

While administration officials have not yet developed a formal recommendation, the administration previously set the refugee cap at 30,000, a significant decrease from the one established under President Obama.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenKamala Harris receives new Iowa endorsements after debate performance Warren speech in Georgia interrupted by pro-charter school protesters Hillicon Valley: Senators ask Trump to halt Huawei licenses | Warren criticizes Zuckerberg over secret dinner with Trump | Senior DHS cyber official to leave | Dems offer bill on Libra oversight MORE (D-Mass.), a 2020 Democratic presidential contender, called the proposal “immoral” in a tweet Friday.

“Our laws and values compel us to help those fleeing violence and oppression. As president, I'll welcome at least 175,000 refugees per year by the end of my first term,” Warren added.

“Zeroing out refugees means no more Christians, Jews, or Muslims could flee persecution,” tweeted Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTrump signs short-term spending bill to avert shutdown Senators urge Trump to suspend Huawei license approvals Tensions rise in Senate's legislative 'graveyard' MORE (D-N.Y.), criticizing his adviser Stephen MillerStephen MillerCNN's Cuomo tries to discredit Trump on overhearing conversations without speakerphone More than 100 Democrats sign letter calling for Stephen Miller to resign Hillary Clinton: 'Every day Stephen Miller remains in the White House is an emergency' MORE. “@realDonaldTrump and Stephen Miller are doing unspeakable harm to the very core of our nation.”

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharA free college tradeoff — what should the 2020 candidates promise? Booker hits fundraising threshold for December debate after surge of post-debate donations The Hill's Morning Report - Sondland stuns; Dems pull punches in fifth debate MORE (D-Minn.), another 2020 presidential candidate, also took aim at the report, tweeting “Refugees come here legally and in my state the Hmong (who came here after the Vietnam War after fleeing their homeland) & Somali refugees are a major part of our workforce. This is a bad idea for so many reasons.”

Washington Gov. Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeO'Rourke ends presidential bid Sunrise Movement organizer: Sanders, Warren boast strongest climate change plans Overnight Energy: Farmers say EPA reneged on ethanol deal | EPA scrubs senators' quotes from controversial ethanol announcement | Perry unsure if he'll comply with subpoena | John Kerry criticizes lack of climate talk at debate MORE (D), a former 2020 candidate, tweeted “America is meant to be a place of refuge and a beacon of hope for those who face persecution around the world. In Washington state, we know that refugees make our communities stronger.”

GQ correspondent Julia Ioffe, a refugee from the former Soviet Union, said the proposal “breaks my heart” and added that unlike those who would be most disadvantaged by the proposal, “there was political will in Washington to help us.”

Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of Human Rights Watch’s Middle East and North Africa Division, tweeted that the move would be “a travesty to walk away from a global duty of care, and a long held American value to care for refugees.”