Chairman Johnson on Canada’s Fast-Track Refugee Plan

Johnson: Islamic terror represents a threat. This is real, it is growing – this is a legitimate concern.

WASHINGTON — Chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and other members of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee heard details Wednesday of Canada’s plan to bring in 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of February. At a hearing titled, “Canada’s Fast-Track Refugee Plan: Unanswered Questions and Implications for U.S. National Security,” members also heard testimony highlighting the need to ensure our porous northern border is secure. Here are remarks from Chairman Johnson:

VIDEO: Click here to watch Chairman Johnson’s full opening remarks.

“The purpose of this hearing is taking a look at a potential threat,” Johnson said. “We’ve had 13 hearings on border security here in terms of our southern as well as our northern borders and our maritime border. I think the conclusion, and I think most committee members would agree with me, is our borders are not secure.”

“Islamic terror represents a threat. This is real, it is growing — this is a legitimate concern. We are all compassionate.  We want to solve these problems. We also have to recognize our responsibility doing everything we can to keep our nation safe and secure.” 

On Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s proposal to admit 25,000 Syrian refugees by February 2016 and 50,000 refugees by the end of the year, Johnson said, “That’s a pretty significant ramp up and over a pretty short period of time.” 

Johnson also pointed out that America’s refugee vetting process takes somewhere between 18-24 months to properly vet a refugee and that officials must make judgments with limited information. “So how can you do the proper vetting?  How can we assure there are no short cuts taken? That is really the purpose of this hearing.”

Watch the full hearing here.

Johnson’s opening statement can be found here.

Witness testimony can be found here.