On Thursday, Fox News reported some changes President Obama made to the Visa Waiver Program.
The article reports:
The Obama administration on Thursday eased visa rules for certain European travelers who have visited terror hotspots in the Middle East and Africa, triggering a backlash from congressional lawmakers who sought the restrictions for security reasons.
Moments after the announcement, two key Republicans declared the administration is “blatantly breaking the law” – a law that President Obama signed – by implementing the changes.
“This is not a difference of opinion over statutory interpretation, it is a clear contradiction of the law and the agreement we reached with the White House,” House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, and Rep. Candice Miller, R-Mich., author of the bill, said in a statement.
The revised requirements announced Thursday pertain to changes passed by Congress in the Visa Waiver Program.
Lawmakers had sought new restrictions to tighten up the program – which allows visa-free travel for residents of eligible countries — in order to prevent Europeans who have joined ISIS from entering the United States. Under the newly passed Visa Waiver Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015, nationals of Iraq, Iran, Syria and Sudan as well as other travelers who have visited those countries since Mar. 1, 2011 now must apply for a visa in order to travel to the U.S.
So what is this about? The article explains:
The new restrictions had previously been criticized by the Iranian government which suggested the U.S. might be violating the nuclear deal by penalizing legitimate business travel to the country.
At some point, the executive branch of our government needs to realize that one of the major supporters and sponsors of terrorism is Iran. To allow people who have visited Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Sudan visa-free travel to America is simply not smart. If this policy stands, we will see increased incidents of terrorism in America. This is not about business travel.