What Minnesota's U.S. lawmakers have said about Trump's immigration order

What Minnesota' U.S. lawmakers have said about Donald Trump's executive order restricting travel and refugees.
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The reaction to President Donald Trump's executive order targeting refugees from Syria and people from seven Muslim-majority countries has generally been loud and swift.

People from all different types of jobs, from a wide variety of sectors, have comments. But here, we wanted to specifically look at what Minnesota's 10 U.S. lawmakers have said.

Why? Because, well, they're elected – you either vote for or against them based on what they do and say. So here's a rundown of the public statements made by our two U.S. senators and eight U.S. representatives about Trump's executive order.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar – Democrat

Klobuchar has been very vocal online in response to the executive order, postingmultiplestatements on Facebook about why she opposes it. She also joined Sen. Al Franken at a news conference Sunday.

"We need to ensure thorough vetting, but we cannot turn our backs on those who play by the rules and strengthen our communities," she wrote. "The President's executive order is unconscionable and has resulted in chaos. It must be reversed."

On Monday, Klobuchar said she's joining a bill to repeal Trump's executive order.

Sen. Al Franken – Democrat

After quoting the closing lines of the poem inscribed on the Statue of Liberty, Franken spoke about America's role as a "beacon of hope" for immigrants and refugees – and said Trump turned his back on that tradition with the executive order.

"His discriminatory executive orders slam our doors shut on innocent people—refugees, immigrants, and even tourists and families trying to visit their loved ones who live here," Franken wrote, later continuing: "It's disgraceful, and it's not who we are as a nation. And I'm going to do everything I can to fight this."

Rep. Tim Walz (CD1) – Democrat

The U.S. representative for southern Minnesota described the order as "blanket discrimination," calling it "shameful and morally reprehensible."

He said the U.S. is enriched by people who bring their talents and hunger for freedom to the U.S., and argued it puts military service members overseas at risk as well.

Walz also went to U.S. Customs and Border Protection at MSP Airport Monday to learn more, and was told they aren't supposed to talk to him.

Rep. Jason Lewis (CD2) – Republican

Lewis, a newcomer to the U.S. House after winning his first election in November, put out a statement Monday supporting parts of the order, while denouncing others.

Lewis said he's all for more border security and immigration controls for people who come to the U.S., since the government's first priority is to keep people safe.

However, he's never supported a religious test for immigration, and notes neither does the Constitution. He also doesn't believe in stopping green card holders "who are lawful residents of our country no matter where they are flying from" from coming into the U.S.

Rep. Erik Paulsen (CD3) – Republican

Paulsen – who along with Lewis and Tom Emmer are Minnesota's only federal Republicans – expressed some concerns about the order.

In a statement Monday, Paulsen said he supports "thorough vetting" of people coming to the U.S. from potentially dangerous countries. But it must be done "responsibly and thoughtfully."

Trump's order, he said, "is too broad and has been poorly implemented and conceived. It is clear from the events this weekend that the executive order does not ensure that legal residents, including green card holders, and non-threats, such as those who served alongside the American military in Iraq, are treated fairly and with the dignity they deserve."

Rep. Betty McCollum (CD4) – Democrat

McCollum came out against Trump's order early, saying on Saturday it's "cruel, betrays our values as Americans, and does nothing to enhance national security."

"Turning away the world's most vulnerable people — fully-vetted refugees fleeing war and persecution — does not make America safer," she continued.

She also immediately called for a Congressional vote to repeal the order, and sponsored the legislation.

Rep. Keith Ellison (CD5) – Democrat

Ellison said on Facebook the order “runs contrary to everything we cherish about America.”

He argues it will threaten the lives of thousands of refugees trying to escape violence, undermine America’s credibility worldwide, and make it harder to fight extremists since many of them “frame the conflict as a religious war between Christianity and Islam.” (Trump has said Christian refugees will be prioritized, USA Today reports.)

Ellison also called for people to get active and organized and involved, and suggested “mass rallies” around the country, the Washington Post reported.

Rep. Tom Emmer (CD6) – Republican

Emmer in a statement Monday pointed to attacks in Paris and San Bernardino as examples of "the danger that refugee and visa programs can pose if the vetting process is not thorough and secure."

He said the executive order might need improvements, but noted it takes "temporary and important steps to reevaluate and enhance our refugee and visa screening process," and said he's confident Congress will work to make sure Americans are safe.

Emmer did acknowledge what he called America's "strong history of welcoming immigrants and refugees from every corner of the globe," saying it's something he embraces and supports.

Rep. Collin Peterson (CD7) – Democrat

Peterson, in a statement provided by Valley News Live, said while he's supported past efforts to increase vetting of immigrants and refugees, he has "reservations" about how the Trump administration is going about it.

Peterson said they did it "with a broad stroke of the pen, instead of working with Congress to ensure a dialogue and getting to a sensible solution that protects Americans at home and our troops abroad while maintaining our core values and respect for Constitutional rights."

Rep. Rick Nolan (CD8) – Democrat

Nolan, as part of his weekly column, addressed a number of Trump's decision, saving the immigration order for last.

"In essence, it’s a ban directed at Muslims - a clear violation of Constitutional protections against religious discrimination that rolls back our Nation’s long, hard fought battle for greater inclusion," he said.

He called the steps "radical and unnecessary," and noted the current vetting process is already lengthy and thorough.

"It’s as good a process as is humanly possible to implement," he said, before continuing: "That said, if there are things that need fixing, we should do it through comprehensive and bipartisan immigration reform – something Republican leaders have consistently refused to allow."

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