Republican Congressman Trey Gowdy’s efforts to shed light on the government’s secretive refugee resettlement program continues to play out in letters between himself and the federal agency responsible for resettling thousands of foreign refugees in U.S. cities and towns every year.
Since his letters haven’t produced many answers, he’s now calling for a meeting with State Department officials.
Gowdy, R-S.C., started asking questions in April about how refugees are distributed to various cities, the impact on local job markets and public services, and who makes the key decisions, among other points of interest. His questions came after it was revealed that Spartanburg, a city in his home district, was selected to receive 60 to 65 refugees over the next year, mostly from Syria. Unable to answer all of the questions posed by some nervous constituents, Gowdy fired off letters to Secretary of State John Kerry.
After getting a response from Kerry that he said was “wholly inadequate” and “vague,” he demanded more specifics on May 4. On Wednesday, he received a second response, which he called a “non-response.”
The State Department secretly selected Spartanburg sometime last year to be one of its designated “receiving communities” for Syrian refugees, 92 percent of whom to date have been Muslim people that the FBI has said will be virtually impossible to safely screen for terrorist connections.