On Tuesday, Hillary Clinton tweeted her opinion of Republican candidates’ efforts to deny Syrian refugees entry into the United States. The loud chorus of GOP candidates has either demanded that no Syrian refugees be admitted, or that only Christian refugees be granted entry, while all Muslims should be turned away.
Clinton minced no words in calling out GOP politicians for their heartless response to the Syrian refugee families trying to escape the violence that has destroyed their home country. Clinton tweeted:
We’ve seen a lot of hateful rhetoric from the GOP. But the idea that we’d turn away refugees because of religion is a new low. -H
While Clinton’s tweet could apply to any of the Republican candidates for President, or to approximately two dozen GOP Governors, it may be most directly aimed at Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
Senator Cruz has started to grandstand on the Syrian refugee issue, as he has signaled his intent to introduce a bill in the U.S. Senate to prevent Syrian refugees from entering the country. Cruz has suggested that Christian Syrians might be permitted to enter, granting them special exceptions to his rule because they share his Christian faith. Hillary Clinton’s tweet takes on Cruz’s selective policy that would essentially create a religious litmus test for admitting Syrian refugees.
Clinton’s position is similar to the one articulated by President Barack Obama on Monday, when he stated:
When I hear folks say that maybe we should just admit the Christians but not the Muslims, when I hear political leaders suggesting that there would be a religious test for which a person who is feeling from a war-torn country is admitted, when some of those folks themselves come from families who benefited from protection when they were fleeing political persecution, that’s shameful. That’s not American. That’s not who we are.
Hillary Clinton, like Barack Obama, is seeking to hold true to American values, by welcoming people in need, fleeing a war zone. Her position contrasts sharply with that of the Republican presidential candidates who have let fear and bigotry consume them. American voters in 2016 will have an opportunity to decide which version of America they prefer — a land of hope and opportunity or a land where fear and hate prevail over reason and compassion.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.