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Posted by on Jan 29, 2017 in Arab-Americans, Law, Politics | 0 comments

Keeping Score: Congress on the Trump Executive Order

Updated 01:20 Pacific Monday 30 January
What has your Senator said about President Trump’s Executive Order that bans immigration from seven Muslim countries?

If he or she is a Republican, it’s crickets on Twitter. Lots of chatter about abortions, though.

Early Sunday morning (4 am Pacific), there were only two exceptions in the Senate and two in the House.

In the Senate: Ben Sasse (R-NE) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ).

And in the House:

And there was silence among quite a few Democrats as well.

Mid-afternoon Sunday (3 pm Pacific), the story had changed. Slightly.

  1. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) issued a joint statement observing that the executive order “was not properly vetted… This executive order sends a signal, intended or not, that America does not want Muslims coming into our country. That is why we fear this executive order may do more to help terrorist recruitment than improve our security.”
  2. Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) supports the court decisions to block deportations and thinks Trump should have worked with Congress. “I think we should slow down [because] our country is not as safe as it should be.” He said that immigration suffers from “not adequate screening, particularly on our visa waiver program, so I do think we need to tighten things up.” In addition, His CNN interview is on his Twitter feed but there is in his news releases. He was forced to make a statement because a constituent got caught up in the NY detentions.

President Trump lashed out at McCain and Graham:

And no, Mr. President, your indiscriminate ban for anyone carrying a passport from seven Middle Eastern countries is nothing like the “>Obama Administration freezing immigration from Iraq.

In addition, a spokesman for Sen. Angus King (ME-I) said that the executive order does not “protect us, but actually compromise[s] our nation’s security.” There is no statement on his Twitter feed or in his news releases.

Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) have made statements about the order. Vox puts them in the “critic” column; I am not. Comments about implementation are not equivalent to opposition to the substance of the ban. And neither have made a public statement on Twitter or via their Senate news releases. Half-hearted at best.

  • Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) criticized its implementation (“poorly implemented”) but not its core values. There is no statement on his Twitter feed or in his news releases.
  • Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) called the measure “overly broad.” There is no statement on her Twitter feed or in her news releases

Late Sunday, according to the NYTimes, the Department of Homeland Security responded to criticism about overreach and announced that lawful permanent residents (green card holders) would be exempt from the ban.

The Times also reported two additional critics: Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, likewise said the order was “overly broad” and that the blanket travel ban “goes too far.” Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee seemed to echo those criticisms, adding that “while not explicitly a religious test, it comes close to one, which is inconsistent with our American character.”

Gardner has not tweeted a statement; Alexander has. I put Gardner’s response in the same category as Corker and Collins, one that objects to the manner in which the EO has been managed but not its substance.

The tally of Republican senators who have either criticized the substance of the EO or endorsed the weekend’s judicial action: Alexander, Flake, Graham, McCain, Portman, Sasse.

The tally of those with lukewarm criticism of process: Collins, Corker and Gardner.

Vox includes these additional US Representatives in its list of those opposing the executive orders.

  1. Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA)
  2. Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  3. Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL)
  4. Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA)
  5. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY)
  6. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL)

Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX), a former undercover CIA officer, criticized the EO in a statement (not shared on Twitter), saying that it “decreases the security of our homeland.”

This visa ban is the ultimate display of mistrust and will erode our allies’ willingness to fight with us. The ban also provides terrorists with another tool to gain sympathy and recruit new fighters.

On the other hand, Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, was for the Executive Order before he was against it.


The silent Ds (nothing on Twitter)

  1. Ben Cardin (D-MD)
  2. Bill Nelson (D-FL)
  3. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)
  4. Joe Manchin III (D-WV)

Here you go, a look at the U.S. Senate, populated by not-a-lot-of-statesmen.

Links are to Twitter accounts.



Jeff Sessions (R)
Richard Shelby (R)


Lisa Murkowski (R)
Daniel S. Sullivan (R)


John McCain (R)

Jeff Flake (R)


Tom Cotton (R)
John Boozman (R)


Kamala D. Harris (D)

Dianne Feinstein (D)


Michael Bennet (D)

Cory Gardner (R)


Richard Blumenthal (D)

Christopher S. Murphy (D)


Tom Carper (D)

Chris Coons (D)


Marco Rubio (R)
Bill Nelson (D)


Johnny Isakson (R)
David Perdue (R)


Mazie K. Hirono (D)

Brian E. Schatz (D)


Mike Crapo (R)
Jim Risch (R)


Tammy Duckworth (D)

Dick Durbin (D)


Todd C. Young (R)
Joe Donnelly (D)


Joni Ernst (R)
Chuck Grassley (R)


Pat Roberts (R)
Jerry Moran (R)


Rand Paul (R)
Mitch McConnell (R)


John Neely Kennedy (R)
Bill Cassidy (R)


Susan Collins (R)
Angus King (I)


Chris Van Hollen (D)

Ben Cardin (D)


Elizabeth Warren (D)

Ed Markey (D)


Gary Peters (D)

Debbie Stabenow (D)


Amy Klobucharv (D)

Al Franken (D)


Thad Cochran (R)
Roger Wicker (R)


Roy Blunt (R)
Claire McCaskill (D)


Steve Daines (R)
Jon Tester (D)


Deb Fischer (R)
Ben Sasse (R)


Dean Heller (R)
Catherine Cortez Masto (D)

New Hampshire

Maggie Hassan (D)

Jeanne Shaheen (D)

New Jersey

Cory Booker (D)

Bob Menendez (D)

New Mexico

Tom Udall (D)
Martin Heinrich (D)

New York

Kirsten Gillibrand (D)

Chuck Schumer (D)

North Carolina

Thom Tillis (R)
Richard Burr (R)

North Dakota

John Hoeven (R)
Heidi Heitkamp (D)


Sherrod Brown (D)

Rob Portman (R)


Jim Inhofe (R)
James Lankford (R)


Ron Wyden (D)

Jeff Merkley (D)


Pat Toomey (R)
Bob Casey, Jr. (D)

Rhode Island

Sheldon Whitehouse (D)

Jack Reed (D)

South Carolina

Tim Scott (R)
Lindsey Graham (R)

South Dakota

Mike Rounds (R)
John Thune (R)


Lamar Alexander (R)

Bob Corker (R)


Ted Cruz (R)
John Cornyn (R)


Orrin Hatch (R)
Mike Lee (R)


Patrick Leahy (D)

Bernie Sanders (I)


Tim Kaine (D)

Mark Warner (D)


Patty Murray (D)

Maria Cantwell (D)

West Virginia

Shelley Moore Capito (R)
Joe Manchin III (D)


Tammy Baldwin (D)

Ron Johnson (R)


Mike Enzi (R)
John Barrasso (R)

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