Email #55, Subject: “pleased” about the Muslim ban?

The GOP is uniting against the President’s Muslim ban. Why aren’t you joining them?

Senator Sessions stated during his appointment hearing for Attorney General: “I have no belief and do not support the idea that Muslims, as a religious group, should be denied admission to the United States.”

Republican Senators McCain and Graham also came out against the ban, stating their fear that the President’s “executive order will become a self-inflicted wound in the fight against terrorism,” bolstering recruitment by terrorists who claim the U.S. hates Muslims.

Republican Senator Sasse said we will lose our battle against jihadists if “we send a signal to the Middle East that the U.S. sees all Muslims as jihadis, the terrorists win by telling kids that America is banning Muslims and this is America versus one religion.”

Republican Senator Collins criticized the President too: “The worldwide refugee ban set forth in the executive order is overly broad and implementing it will be immediately problematic.”

Republican Representative Dent called the ban “unacceptable” and urged “the administration to halt enforcement of the order until a more thoughtful and deliberate policy can be instated.”

Republican Representative Amash said “a blanket ban represents an extreme approach not consistent with our nation’s values.”

Even Senate Majority Leader McConnell questioned the legality of the ban: “It’s hopefully going to be decided in the courts as to whether or not this has gone too far.”

But rather than joining your fellow Republicans, you instead stated: “I am pleased that President Trump is using the tools granted to him by Congress and the power granted by the Constitution to help keep America safe and ensure we know who is entering the United States.”

By evoking the Constitution and Congressional oversight, you are implying that the President’s decision is legal and not an example of “executive overreach,” a danger you previously identified as one of your top concerns. In fact, you listed “checking executive overreach” as one of your six priorities after your reelection in November. Why are you now abandoning it at a moment when the legality of a sweeping executive order is deeply in question?

We have never had a President in greater need of Congressional oversight. Please reconsider your endorsement of his Muslim ban. Congress must show a unified, bipartisan front against the President on this issue.

Author: Chris Gavaler

Chris Gavaler is an associate professor at W&L University, comics editor of Shenandoah, and series editor of Bloomsbury Critical Guides in Comics Studies. He has published two novels: School for Tricksters (SMU 2011) and Pretend I’m Not Here (HarperCollins 2002); and six books of scholarship: On the Origin of Superheroes (Iowa 2015), Superhero Comics (Bloomsbury 2017), Superhero Thought Experiments (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Iowa 2019), Revising Fiction, Fact, and Faith (with Nathaniel Goldberg, Routledge 2020), Creating Comics (with Leigh Ann Beavers, Bloomsbury 2021), and The Comics Form (Bloomsbury forthcoming). His visual work appears in Ilanot Review, North American Review, Aquifer, and other journals.

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