The Trump administration went on the defensive on Sunday over President Donald Trump’s controversial executive order banning Muslims from seven Middle Eastern countries from entering the United States for 90 days, making the talk show rounds and explaining the controversial decision.
White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus said there won’t be any apologies over the new order after the ban sparked widespread protests in the U.S. on Saturday and prompted a court order temporarily barring the U.S from deporting some people.
The action “doesn’t affect green card holders moving forward,” Priebus said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
The court order came as dozens of people were detained on Saturday as they arrived in the U.S., most already enroute as the order took affect on Friday.
Top Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway said on “Fox News Sunday” that the emergency court order “really doesn’t affect” the temporary travel ban at all.
The executive order is about “preventing, not detaining,” Conway said, adding that only a small percentage of travelers had been impacted.
President Donald Trump also took to Twitter early Sunday. “Our country needs strong border and extreme vetting,” he tweeted.
Our country needs strong borders and extreme vetting, NOW. Look what is happening all over Europe and, indeed, the world - a horrible mess!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 29, 2017
He followed up that tweet with another about the dangers Christians face in some places in the Middle East. “Christians in the Middle-East have been executed in large numbers. We cannot allow this horror to continue!”
Christians in the Middle-East have been executed in large numbers. We cannot allow this horror to continue!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 29, 2017
Trump’s order is getting pushback in Congress, though, even from fellow Republicans.
On CNN’s “State of the Union” Ohio Republican Senator Rob Portman said “I think we should slow down.” He also said lawmakers need to be part of the discussion on how best to tighten security and better vet foreigners entering the U.S.
Portman also said he doesn’t believe Trump’s executive order was properly reviewed.
The U.S. is “this beacon of hope and opportunity for the rest of the world” and should stay that way, Portman said.
Virginia Republican Barbara Comstock said on Twitter that it’s unconstitutional to ban people from the U.S. on religious grounds, but that she does support “increased vetting based on national security concerns.”
But Trump’s order “went beyond the increased vetting actions that Congress has supported on a bi-partisan basis,” Comstock said.
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