House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday called for a pause in the Syrian refugee program, saying in the wake of the Paris attacks, “it’s better to be safe than sorry.” He also called on the president to come up with a plan for defeating ISIS — as opposed to just containing them.
Characterizing the attacks as “pure evil” and “an act of war,” Ryan told reporters that “the world needs American leadership.”
In clear reference to President Obama’s recent statement saying ISIS is “contained,” the speaker noted that the national defense bill passed by Congress today “requires the president to come up with a plan for defeating ISIS — not just containing — but defeating ISIS. A containment plan is not enough. That has failed.”
Regarding the Syrian refugee program, he said, “This is a moment where it is better to be safe than to be sorry, so we think the prudent, the responsible thing is to take a pause in this particular aspect of this refugee program in order to verify that terrorists are not trying to infiltrate the refugee population.”
Ryan said the House will vote on the issue this week.