Hassan Defends Her Call For "A Pause" In Syrian Refugee Resettlement

Nov 17, 2015

Gov. Maggie Hassan
Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Governor Maggie Hassan is defending her call for the U.S. government to stop accepting refugees from Syria. 

Hassan is the only democratic among the 30 U.S governors opposing current U.S. policy on Syrian refugee resettlement.

She says calling for "a pause" in  Syrian refugee resettlement in light of the Paris attacks is consistent with she called the first job of government, protecting the people.

“And we can’t do any of the things that we want to do in a free democracy, whether it’s educate our children or have entrepreneurs start businesses if we are not safe -- and I know that refugees and immigrants want that kind of safety too.”

Hassan’s stance puts her at odds with President Obama, who says current refugee screenings – a 13 step process that can take years --  are working, and also top New Hampshire democrats, ranging from Senator Jeanne Shaheen, to the two democrats vying to succeed Hassan  as Governor.

Republican Kelly Ayotte, meanwhile, who  Hassan is challenging for US Senate, also supports stopping Syrian refugee resettlement.