Presidential candidate Ben Carson is scheduled to hold a fundraiser in San Diego Tuesday afternoon, one day after joining a chorus of mostly Republican voices in criticizing the Obama administration’s plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees into the United States.
Carson, a retired pediatric neurosurgeon, turned to Facebook to announce he would ask Congress to stop the plan.
“There is currently no ability to vet these people,” Carson said on Monday. “By letting refugees into our country without vetting we are putting America at risk. If our president cannot see the risk, then we must rise to the challenge and protect our country.”
One of the terrorists killed in Paris Friday was reported to be carrying a Syrian passport, suggesting he could have left Syria as a refugee.
Speaking at a news conference Monday in Antalya, Turkey, site of the G20 summit, President Barack Obama said the Syrian refugees are admitted “only after subjecting them to rigorous screening and security checks.”
“We also have to remember that many of these refugees are the victims of terrorism themselves — that’s what they’re fleeing,” Obama said.
“Slamming the door in their faces would be a betrayal of our values. Our nations can welcome refugees who are desperately seeking safety and ensure our own security. We can and must do both.”
Carson said “we should do everything in our power to help these men, women, and children who have been forced to flee their country, but until we can sort out the bad guys, we must not be foolish.”
Carson called for increased aid to the refugees, doing “more to feed the hungry and shelter the homeless” and to “protect them from being attacked by implementing immediately no-fly zone over these camps.”
Obama said it would be counterproductive to establish a no-fly zone because ISIS “does not have planes” and “the bulk of the deaths that have occurred in Syria” have been the result of “on-the-ground casualties.”
Carson will arrive in San Diego from Costa Mesa, site of a fundraiser earlier today, an aide said. Both fundraisers will be closed to reporters, like most fundraisers for presidential candidates.
—City News Service
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