FAIR's Statement on Donald Trump’s Muslim Immigration Comments
(December 8, 2015 — Washington, D.C.) — The following statement was issued by Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in response to comments made by Donald Trump.
“Donald Trump’s assertion that we categorically bar admission to people based solely on their religious identities is one that runs counter to American values, but is rooted in a grim reality that the Americans can no longer trust the government’s vetting process and its ability to screen out those susceptible to beliefs and actions inconsistent with life in a modern, Western-style democracy. Certainly this is true at today’s all-time high levels of immigration and non-immigrant entry. Failure to come to grips with this reality has the potential to radically alter the American way of life and undermine our national freedoms as the U.S. faces a threat of truly unprecedented dimensions.
“FAIR does not support immigration restrictions based solely on religious faith in the absence of other factors that indicate an inability to support our constitutional framework. Yet every nation has the right to exclude people when the manifestation of their religious, political, or ideological beliefs threaten public safety or is fundamentally at odds with the values and freedoms set forth in our Constitution. Moreover, the President retains a statutory authority to suspend any class of aliens he/she deems a threat to the vital security interest of the nation.
“In the aftermath of recent events in Europe and San Bernardino, the United States has an obligation to make sure that every person we admit to this country has been effectively vetted. The standard cannot be absolute certainty, but as the case of Tafsheen Malik indicates, the vetting process overlooked glaring red flags that should have kept her out of this country. In this modern age of portable weaponry of great destructive power, how much margin for error can be allowed? Donald Trump said yesterday we need “to figure out what is going on.” What is going on is simple: the U.S. can no longer rely on post-entry intelligence gathering to prevent terror attacks in the U.S.
“Whether immigration is suspended from certain regions or countries or not, overall immigration must be reduced – as FAIR has insisted repeatedly over many years – to get the nation’s immigration policy back on track as a tool to serve the national interest.
“Since 1991, FAIR has called for an overall time out on most immigration for many valid reasons. In an age of global terrorism, we can add the imperative that every person we admit must be given the proper degree of scrutiny. That simply cannot be done at current levels, particularly from countries that serve as incubators of global jihad.
“The increase in so-called “homegrown” terrorists additionally points to another dangerous byproduct of excessive immigration: the breakdown of the assimilation process. Both here and in other Western democracies, we are witnessing the radicalization of immigrants and their children in mosques that spread ideologies that are antithetical to those societies. The fact that these domestic incubators of Islamic radicalism are having a greater influence on recently arrived immigrants and their children than the values on which this country was founded is worrisome and demands that we reduce immigration to levels that allow for greater assimilation into the cultural mainstream of this nation.”