Kamala Harris on Foreign Policy
California Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris said in an interview that she opposed the GOP measure because it set up an "untenable" system. Beyond the current 18-to-24 month vetting process, it would have required top federal officials to certify that individual refugees pose no threat. She recalled a heart-rending photo of a drowned Syrian toddler, part of a refugee family torn apart while trying to escape: "We can't allow the images of the tragedy of what happened in Paris to blind us to the image of a 3-year-old child who washed up on a Mediterranean beach." She said, "There is a drum beating, that the way to keep us safe is to keep outsiders out. That scares me. Ask native Americans: We are a country of immigrants." But, she added, "there's no question that we have to be vigilant."
Foreign policy has become an unusually prominent issue heading into the 2016 election cycle. President Obama has made a strong effort to avoid labeling the terrorism carried out in the name of religion "radical Islam." When asked for her take on that, Harris echoed President Obama saying "there are extremists who are using religion as a cloak to commit terror and terrorist acts. And I think it would be a mistake for any of us to mistake the religion for the terrorists. They can be distinguished. And they should be in our language as well as our policy approach."
She prefaced her remarks by pointing out the need to talk about Israel "because it is our strongest ally in the Middle East. And so we have to take that seriously and be guided by that reality, as it relates to issues that impact the Middle East."
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