Political Insider

An AJC blog about Atlanta politics, Georgia politics, Georgia and metro Atlanta election campaigns. Because all politics is local.

Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton butt heads on 'extreme vetting' of Syrian refugees

The two candidates for president showcased strikingly different views for how to handle refugees from war-torn Syria during Sunday's presidential debate as Georgia continues to resettle migrants across the states.

Republican Donald Trump explained how an initial idea to ban Muslim refugees from entering the United States "morphed" into an "extreme vetting" proposal.

“We have no idea who they are, where they’re from, what their feelings about our country are," Trump said of the refugees, "and (Clinton) wants 550 percent more. This is going to be the great Trojan horse of all time.”

Clinton referenced the haunting photo of a bloodied four-year-old boy from Aleppo in her defense about why the U.S. needs to allow more refugees, particularly women and children.

“I will not let anyone into our country who I think poses a risk to us. But ... there are children suffering in this catastrophic war largely I believe because of Russian aggression and we need to do our part," she said, adding that Trump's approach is "extremely unwise and even dangerous.”

Georgia, meanwhile, has been accepting new arrivals from Syria for roughly two years despite some questions from Republican leaders about the Obama administration's resettlement program.

Read more on Georgia and Syrian refugees: 

Nathan Deal rescinds order attempting to ban Syrian refugees from Georgia

Syrians begin resettling in Georgia amid civil war; more on the way

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About the Author

Tamar Hallerman is The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Washington correspondent, covering Congress, federal agencies and other government activities that impact Georgia.