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Governor LePage Speaks about Syrian Refugees

November 16, 2015

For Immediate Release: Monday, November 16, 2015
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531

Paris Attacks Unite Allies, Creates Concern about Syrian Refugees Entering U.S.

Governor Paul R. LePage has released an advance copy of this week’s radio address in light of the recent attacks in France and following queries related to Syrian refugees entering into the U.S. and Maine.

The written copy is below and a recorded version will be available later today.

Radio Address:

President Obama said he will allow 10,000 Syrian refugees into our country within the next year, and his staff is confident in the federal government’s screening process.

In the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris, the President’s actions are irresponsible.

Hello, this is Governor Paul LePage.

Several Governors have already stated concerns about Syrian refugees resettling in the U.S. Two Governors will not agree to relocate Syrian refugees in their states. Unfortunately, we do not know for certain if Maine has any Syrian refugees at this time.

While the President has expressed confidence in the U.S. screening process, some have pointed out the gaping holes in our immigration policy.

Rep. Mike McCaul of Texas is chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. He says there is no way to vet refugees because there are no databases to do such a thing.

McCaul said the Obama Administration lacks the names of 5,000 or more foreign fighters around the world—these are very dangerous people who pose serious threats on a global scale.

One of the first actions I took as Governor was to ensure Maine is no longer a sanctuary state that harbors illegal aliens. It’s important to follow federal law, and we work with law enforcement and other agencies to assist the federal government on immigration matters.

As a free state and country, we are always vulnerable to attack. The safety of our citizens comes first. We need responsible immigration policies to protect not only Americans, but all people.

The terrorist attacks in France are a tragic reminder of the dangerous world we live in. It is my responsibility as Governor to protect the people of Maine with the resources I have available. Staff from my office has reached out to the Consulate General of France in Boston to offer any assistance on behalf of the State of Maine.

The Maine Department of Public Safety and Maine Emergency Management Agency are working with the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and other federal agencies to monitor any possible threats.

This is not a time to incite panic or fear. But I remind Mainers to stay alert to your surroundings and to report any suspicious activity.

You can make a report by calling 877-786-3636. That’s 877-786-3636.

On behalf of all Mainers, we offer our deepest condolences to the victims and their families in Paris. An attack on our allies in France is considered an assault on the United States, and we stand together in condemning all acts of terrorism in friendly nations and around the world.

Thank you for listening.

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