Published on Jan 29, 2017
Minnesota’s US Senators say President Donald Trump’s executive order on refugees is not only likely unconstitutional, but it was not well thought through and has resulted in “chaos.”
“You don’t create chaos while you’re doing it. And you don’t do it on the backs of these little girls right now who are waiting for their four-year-old sister,” said Sen Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) standing next to two small children in pink jackets and their mother Samira Dair a Somali refugee who came to Minneapolis in 2013,
Dair says her 4-year-old daughter Mushkaad was scheduled to fly with an escort from Kampala to Minnesota on Monday, but her status is in doubt.
She has been working for years to reunite her family. Trump’s oder came three days before her daughter’s scheduled trip to Minnesota.
The child’s sisters, Muwatib and Mumtaz stood next to Klobuchar at the news conference.
“These are the faces, right here, of who this is affecting,” Klobuchar said. “These little pink jackets. A 4-year-old. And it’s happening over and over.”
“Who is Donald Trump?” asked one of the girls to the press conference crowd.
“That’s a huge question,” said Sen. Al Franken (D-MN).
“They’re not exactly quite aware of all of the politics and what’s gone on in our election all the time, but they’re quickly becoming aware,” said Klobuchar. “And a lot of people are waking up seeing what the effects are when you have people issuing these orders without talking to lawyers, without talking to businesses, without talking to the people in the communities. And so I think the message we’d send is ‘we’re here and we’re not going to go away.'”
Trump’s executive order, signed at the Pentagon on Friday, suspends the entry of all refugees for 120 days, halts the admission of refugees from Syria indefinitely and bars entry for three months to residents from the predominantly-Muslim countries of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.
“It’s probably unconstitutional in that it targets country of origin and religion at the same time. Both of which are unconstitutional,” said Sen. Al Franken after he and Klobuchar with privately with community leaders, advocates and Minnesota families impacted by Trump’s order.
“This is not our country,” said Franken of Trump’s order. “I would remind President Trump that on the Statue of Liberty, my grandfather coming from Belarus read this:
‘Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!'”
“That is our country and that is the strength of our country. We are all immigrants, or refugees, or American Indians. That’s who we are.”