In a Nov. 18 interview with Jenna Lee on Fox News, Republican presidential candidate Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said the U.S.should stop all arm sales to Middle Eastern countries until they start accepting refugees (video below).
“One of the biggest supporters of Sunni terrorism in the world is Saudi Arabia, Qatar is up there, UAE is up there," Paul said. "Sometimes government, sometimes private donors.
"What I would say is no more sales of any arms to these countries until they start accepting refugees. The Gulf states have poured gasoline on this fire, they have not taken a refugee. Iran has not taken in refugees and they've been an arsonist in this situation as well. So those who live there need to step up and we need to say we're not going to sell arms to you anymore if you're not willing to do your fair share.”
Paul also mentioned in the interview that he is not in favor of greater surveillance on American citizens in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks on Nov. 13 that claimed the lives of at least 129 people.
“I’m not for giving up more liberty,” Paul said.
He noted that such surveillance measures have not yielded results to catch terrorists and that Americans should fight for their liberties -- which includes "the right to be left alone" and not have “an all-powerful government that looks at every aspect of our everyday.”
Paul’s Fox News interview comes just days after he introduced legislation to prevent terrorists from entering the U.S. as refugees, as announced on RandPaul.com.
Under the proposed legislation, issuing visas to nationals of countries with a high risk of terrorism would be suspended until the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) certifies and Congress votes to approve that:
1) Aliens already admitted from high-risk countries have been fingerprinted and screened, pose no terrorist risk, and are being monitored for terrorist activity.
2) Enhanced security measures are in place to screen future applicants and prevent terrorists from entering the country.
3) DHS' visa entry-exit system is 100 percent complete and a tracking system is in place to catch attempted overstays.
A 30-day waiting period would also be imposed for all entries to the U.S. in order for background checks to be completed, unless the traveler is already approved through the Global Entry program.
The waiting period requirement would be lifted after DHS certifies and Congress approves that:
1) Screening of entrants is sufficient to prevent terrorists from entering the country.
2) DHS' visa entry-exit system is 100 percent complete and a tracking system is in place to catch attempted overstays.
“The time has come to stop terrorists from walking in our front door,” Paul said in the legislation announcement, according to his website. “The Boston Marathon bombers were refugees, and numerous refugees from Iraq, including some living in my hometown, have attempted to commit terrorist attacks.
"The terrorist attacks in Paris underscore this concern that I have been working to address for the past several years. My bill will press pause on new refugee entrants from high-risk countries until stringent new screening procedures are in place.”
Paul proposed similar legislation in 2013.