Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton suggested in an interview released Monday the lower courts' objection to President Donald Trump's travel ban comes from a hypocritical view of the president's role in immigration.
Paxton told The Washington Free Beacon that Texas became the first state to attempt to stop the influx of Syrian refugees over security concerns because former President Barack Obama's administration refused to share information on the refugees with state and local officials.
"Maybe they were doing extreme vetting, but what good is it to us when they won't share that info?" Paxton said.
"So, we didn't know who to worry about and who not to, so we sued over it and were told that this is the purview of the federal government and the president, and now that there's a different president, suddenly it seems to be a problem for the courts" the president controls who enters the country.
Last week, Paxton said Trump's administration has "done more than any administration in the history of the world" to curb illegal immigration, according to The Daily Caller.
"So, I'm pretty happy that they've done so much in such a short period of time, so it would really be difficult for me to criticize them on that issue, because there's no comparison with any other administration as far as how quickly and effectively they've approached the problem on many different fronts."
Paxton told the Free Beacon that Trump's travel ban includes seven countries Obama designated "terrorist hotbeds" and limited travel for people who had lived in or visited Syria, Sudan, and Iraq since March 2011.
"We want to be able to tell the community [in Texas and other states] that they are safe — if you look at what's going on in England or France or Belgium, we just don't want to import problems like they've imported and be lax in our security measures, because my first responsibility is to the citizens of my state — their security, their well-being," Paxton said in defense of Trump's travel ban.
"Whether we're willing to help people from other countries, I think that's great. We should be open to it, and we've done it since the beginning of our country, but there's a balance here and our first responsibility is making sure that what we're doing isn't causing a high risk to our citizens."
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