Concerning the Paris attack, Nevada’s Governor is scrambling to provide answers to an onslaught of questions and demands from his residents, following a published letter to the Governor from Nevada Assemblyman John Moore (R-Nev) on Nov. 17, 2015. The letter urged Governor Brian Sandoval to join with other governors and prevent Syrian refugees from migrating to Nevada. Moore also declared, “I have no faith that our current leadership in the White House can or will screen the current wave of refugees properly to ensure the safety of the American people, including Nevadans.” Moore ended his letter reminding Sandoval they both had sworn an oath to “protect and defend against all enemies, both foreign and domestic.”
The assemblyman’s letter about the Paris attack started a firestorm and has a number of Nevada officials scrambling to provide answers. As soon as Moore’s letter hit the airwaves, other elected officials began piling on to his concerns, including Michael McDonald, Chairman of the Nevada Republican Party. The GOP state party initiated an online petition using social media. McDonald calls for residents to sign the petition and contact the Governor’s office to request, as other states governors are doing, that he immediately work to stop refugees flowing into Nevada. Former U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle also made a public plea to Sandoval, followed by Senator Dean Heller (R-Nev). In direct response to Moore and McDonald, Sandoval released a public statement explaining his concern. He informed residents that he is in close contact with state agencies and the White House to obtain critical information that will assist him in moving forward. A slew of additional Nevada elected officials and 2016 candidates have now made public statements about the Paris attack as they push the governor for answers on refugees entering Nevada.
In light of the outcry from residents about the Paris attack and the resettlement of Syrian refugees, the governor has since appointed Lt. Governor Mark Hutchison (R-Nev) to the Homeland Security Commission and re-established a working group. Sandoval himself will serve as Chair of the group. Currently, the governor’s office has not released additional information or a time frame as to when residents can expect to hear anything new on refugees relocating to Nevada. No word on whether the White House has responded to Sandoval’s request for information. At this time the governor is unclear about how many refugees may already be in his state.
For now, Nevadans will have to wait for further direction from their state leader. How he will respond to the refugee influx while balancing the powers of state and federal government remains to be seen. It is unclear if the re-established Homeland Security Commission will provide answers or if the response will come from the governor’s office concerning the Paris attack and refugee relocation.
By Lucy Lane
Edited by Jeanette Smith
Las Vegas Review-Journal: Sandoval names lieutenant governor to Nevada homeland security panel
Assemblyman John Moore’s Facebook Page
News 4: Sen. Heller asks Gov. Sandoval to reject Syrian refugees in Nevada
Image Courtesy of Brian Sandoval’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License