GOP candidates criticize Obama over Syrian migration in wake of Paris attacks
Just as the killing of Katherine Steinle in San Francisco turned the spotlight of the U.S. politics onto immigration reform, Friday's deadly terror attacks in Paris have redirected the focus of 2016 presidential race onto terrorism and the Islamic state. But for some presidential hopefuls, the issues of border security and Syrian migration are one in the same.
Republican candidates on the campaign trail turned to criticize Democrats for their open-arms policy towards Syrian migrants, Politco reports. Speaking in Beaumont, Texas, real estate mogul Donald Trump called President Barack Obama's proposal to resettle “250,000” Syrian migrants in U.S. “insane.” (Politico noted that Trump grossly exaggerated the actual figure, which is 10,000.)
Meanwhile, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) echoed those sentiments during campaign’s “rally for religious liberty” in Greenville.
“President Obama and Hillary Clinton’s idea that we should bring tens of thousands of Syrian Muslim refugees to America: it is nothing less than lunacy,” he told Fox News.
Cruz and Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) are leading the charge from their side of the aisle. In a video released by his presidential campaign team, Rubio viewed the Paris attacks through the clash-of-civilizations lens.
“They literally want to overthrow our society and replace it with their radical, Sunni Islamic view of the future,” Rubio said. “They do not hate us because we have military assets in the Middle East.
“They hate us because of our values. They hate us because young girls here go to school. They hate us because women drive. They hate us because we have freedom of speech, because we have diversity in our religious beliefs. They hate us because we’re a tolerant society.”
During Saturday night's Democratic debate, Secretary Hillary Clinton emphasized the U.S. was “not at war with Islam.” On Sunday, Rubio responded to the Secretary's comments in a one-on-one interview with ABC.
“That would be like saying we weren't at war with Nazis because we were afraid to offend some Germans who may have been members of the Nazi party but weren't violent themselves. We are at war with radical Islam,” Rubio said. “There is no middle ground on this.”