Congressman Leonard Lance

Representing the 7th District of New Jersey

Lance Blasts Senate for Failure to Pass Refugee Reform

Jan 20, 2016
Press Release

WESTFIELD, N.J. --- Congressman Leonard Lance (NJ-07) released the following statement after U.S. Senate Democrats blocked consideration of H.R. 4038, legislation that passed the U.S. House of Representatives with a bipartisan veto-proof majority.  The bill would have temporarily paused the President’s refugee resettlement program and proposed reforms for a more effective vetting and monitoring process.

 I am disappointed Harry Reid and Senate Democrats chose political posturing over adding an additional needed layer of security to our refugee vetting process.  We know ISIS terrorists are trying to infiltrate our Nation’s immigration system.  The House took action and passed a serious bill with a bipartisan veto proof majority that imposes rigorous vetting and still allows those in need to seek refuge.  Yet the Senate decided not even to proceed to debate this issue.  This continued gridlock is the reason why I support ending the Senate filibuster,” said Lance.            

H.R. 4038 would have placed new standards for a proposed Syrian or Iraqi refugee, reforms overwhelmingly supported by the American people:

•The country’s top security officials—the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of the FBI and the Director of National Intelligence— must unanimously certify that the individual does not represent a security threat;

•It directs the FBI to validate that the background checks are thorough enough to keep dangerous individuals out of the country;

•It mandates Congress must receive certifications before admittance;

•And it instructs the DHS Inspector General to assess the refugee approvals independently—making sure that high-risk individuals do not slip through the cracks.