Nothing like picking up the New York Times, “the nation’s newspaper,” seeing an editorial titled “Judge’s Message to Xenophobes,” and realizing it’s all about Indiana Governor Mike Pence.
The editorial was in response to the stinging decision by Federal Judge Tanya Walton Pratt, in which she not only found what every first-year law student already knew–that federal government, not the state, has jurisdiction over the resettlement of Syrian refugees–but that Pence’s move to withhold resettlement funds was “in no way” justified by his claim that his main concern was the safety of Indiana residents.
Resettlement lawyers said the ruling was the first to address substantively the attempt by some governors, mostly Republicans, to exploit the terrorism issue. The presidential candidates, of course, have been vying furiously to keep up with venomous nativism coming from Donald Trump and from Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, who told a conservative radio interviewer that “I don’t think orphans under 5 are being, you know, should be admitted into the United States at this point.”
I had no idea those five-year-old Syrian kids could be so dangerous….but of course, they’re Muslims….
According to the State Department, 67 percent of the Syrian refugees referred to the United States for asylum are women and children under the age of 12. Mr. Trump has falsely suggested that federal officials steered Syrian refugees to states with Republican governors, when in fact resettlement decisions are made by mainstream social agencies like the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Mr. Trump’s claim was one more example of propaganda being used to distort the truth on the refugee issue.
Governor Pence’s willingness to make political points by inflicting unnecessary harm on children who are already in dire straits simply confirms what even the most casual observer has seen: a self-important, self-described “Christian” more interested in pandering to his party’s fundamentalist base than in governing the state of Indiana.
What is even more unbelievable is that Mr. Posturer insists he will appeal the decision. He will expend taxpayer resources to appeal a judicial application of settled law, further announcing to the nation and the world that Indiana is an unwelcoming and discriminatory state.
That ought to be almost as good for business as his defense of homophobia.
I know where you can buy a “Pence Must Go” sign.