A large portion of the country is irate over President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration, which ends the refugee resettlement program and prevents immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. Protests broke out across the nation yesterday in response to the order, and now some of Trump’s fellow Republicans have come forward to denounce it as well.
Senators John McCain (R-Arizona) and Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) released a joint statement on Sunday criticizing both the content of Trump’s order and the way in which it was carried out.
In their statement, both McCain and Graham emphasized the fact that they want U.S. borders to be defended. However, they want them defended “in a way that makes us safer and upholds all that is decent and exceptional about our nation.”
Trump’s blanket ban, according to McCain and Graham, is not the proper way at all to go about increasing border security.
The two Senators went on to say that Trump’s order was “not properly vetted.” They also explained that they are “concerned by reports that this order went into effect with little to no consultation with the Departments of State, Defense, Justice, and Homeland Security.”
Trump’s order, which can be read in its entirety here, was poorly executed, and the hastiness with which it was implemented has caused a nationwide uproar as individuals who have waited years to the enter the country and have fulfilled all necessary steps have been turned away and detained at airports.
McCain and Graham went on to list some of the specific problems they have with Trump’s order:
‘We should not stop green-card holders from returning to the country they call home. We should not stop those who have served as interpreters for our military and diplomats from seeking refuge in the country they risked their lives to help. And we should not turn our backs on those refugees who have been shown through extensive vetting to pose no demonstrable threat to our nation, and who have suffered unspeakable horrors, most of them women and children.’
The final paragraph of the statement expounds upon a fear that Senator McCain expressed earlier today. In an interview with CBS’s John Dickerson, McCain explained that he thought Trump’s order would provided ISIS with “more propaganda.”
McCain and Graham delved deeper into the potential problem in their statement, explaining that they fear the order “will become a self-inflicted wound in the fight against terrorism.”
They went on to add that the order sends a negative message about the U.S. to the many people who reside in Muslim-majority countries — particularly those in Iraq who are working side-by-side with U.S. troops.
‘Our most important allies in the fight against ISIL are the vast majority of Muslims who reject its apocalyptic ideology of hatred. This executive order sends a signal, intended or not, that America does not want Muslims coming into our country. That is why we fear this executive order may do more to help terrorist recruitment than improve our security.’
When Donald Trump signed this executive order, he said that he and his administration “want to ensure that we are not admitting into our country the very threats our soldiers are fighting overseas.” If McCain and Graham are correct in their predictions about how Trump’s order will be received, then the President will have, after only a week in office, increased the threat of terrorism, rather than diminished it.
Featured image via William B. Plowman/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images.