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Rex Tillerson Won't Rule Out Muslim Registry at Senate Hearing

Image: Rex Tillerson Won't Rule Out Muslim Registry at Senate Hearing

(AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 11 Jan 2017 05:31 PM

Rex Tillerson Wednesday would not rule out a national registry for Muslims — though not a "blanket-type ban" on their entering the country — at his Senate confirmation hearing for secretary of state.

"I would need more information about how such an approach would even be constructed," Tillerson, 64, the retired Exxon Mobil CEO, told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. "If it were a tool for vetting, it would probably extend to other groups that were threats to the U.S. as well.

"I would just need more information on how that would even be approached," he said in response to a question on the registry by Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire.

Trump originally called for a ban on all Muslims entering the U.S. before changing it to focus on countries compromised by terrorism. He nominated Tillerson for the diplomatic post last month.

Regarding his opposition to a broader ban on Muslims, Tillerson said: "What's important is that we are able to make a judgment about the people that are coming into the country.

"And, so, no, I do not support a blanket-type rejection of any particular group of people.

"But clearly, we have serious challenges to be able to vet people coming into the country and particularly under the current circumstances because of the instability in parts of the world where it is occurring.

"It is a huge challenge," Tillerson said, "and I don't think we can close our eyes and ignore that we have to be very clear-eyed in recognizing that threat and develop a means to deal with it."

Two other Trump nominees raised opposition to a Muslim registry in their hearings on Tuesday.

Homeland Security candidate Ret. Gen. John Kelly said that he would not agree to a religion-based registry, while Sen. Jeff Sessions, the attorney general nominee, said a registry would raise constitutional issues.

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Rex Tillerson Wednesday would not rule out a national registry for Muslims — though not a "blanket-type ban" on their entering the country — at his Senate confirmation hearing for secretary of state.
rex tillerson, muslim, registry, senate, confirmation, hearing
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2017-31-11
Wednesday, 11 Jan 2017 05:31 PM
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