Rep. Jan Schakowsky Votes Against Unnecessary Restrictions to the Visa Waiver Program

Washington, DC –(ENEWSPF)–December 10, 2015.  Yesterday, Representative Jan Schakowsky released the following statement after voting against H.R. 158, the Visa Waiver Program Improvement Act of 2015. The legislation was also opposed by: The American Civil Liberties Union, National Immigration Law Center, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Council on American-Islamic Relations, and American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee:

“With the threat posed to this nation by terrorism, Congress should begin by barring those on the terrorism watch list from buying guns. The legislation that was voted on today claims to prevent terrorists from entering this country, but instead of preventing high-risk individuals from entering this country, many low-risk individuals will be barred from the Visa Waver Program. Due to the overly broad language in this legislation many dual nationals from Iraq and Syria who gained the status through their parents would be barred from the visa waver program. This bill would also bar those who have traveled to Iraq and Syria or other designated countries from the program, even if they were there to provide humanitarian or medical assistance. Lastly, thousands of additional people would be forced to go through U.S. consulates, placing an undue burden on the workers whose job it is to screen for actual security threats who may be trying to enter the country. Those determined to do our country harm still have all of the other non-legal options available to enter this country. In order to keep our nation safe we should take concrete steps to ensure our existing screening process is tight and that we close down illegal channels for terrorists to enter. This overly broad legislation would only prevent many law abiding individuals from entering this country.”

Source: www.schakowsky.house.gov