WATCH: GOP Rep supports Trump’s call to end visa lottery program

North Dakota Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer supports President Trump’s call for Congress to dismantle the State Department diversity visa lottery program that authorities say was used by a suspect in a New York terror attack that killed eight people on Tuesday.

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Sayfullo Saipov, who was shot and is in custody after being accused of driving a truck through bicyclists and pedestrians in New York, entered the United States in 2010 from Uzbekistan under the program, which gives visas to people from countries with few immigrants to the United States.

In the wake of the attack, Trump has called for the program to be ended.

Cramer told The Hill on camWednesday that he agrees, and that the program “didn’t make any sense” even before the attack.

“When I learned about this special diversity visa it didn’t make any sense to me — prior to New York,” Cramer said. “I think New York just probably provided the straw that breaks the camel’s back.”

Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) also questioned the visa lottery program telling The Hill, “I never thought a lottery was the best way to set immigration policy. That’s just chance. We need to think about people that we want to be in the country.”

Democratic Rep. Earl Blumenauer (Ore.), however, dismissed the president’s call to dismantle the visa program.


“This is just one more example of stuff that pops off the top of his head, that hasn’t been vetted by even his own experts and adds to this notion of chaos surrounding immigration and national security,” Blumenauer told The Hill.

Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) said the president’s focus on ending the visa lottery distracts from the “real issue,” which he says is, “how are these people getting radicalized here in the United States?”

Republican Rep. Steve Russell (Okla.) said before anything else, he needed more answers from investigators on the suspect.

“I don’t know. In this case, I think we need to gather more details about his activities leading up to this,” Russell said in an interview.

Watch the video above to hear the lawmakers in their own words.