'Immigrants and refugees are welcome in Minneapolis.' Mayor Jacob Frey responds to Trump

USA Today Politics 1 month ago

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey responded on Twitter to President Donald Trump's comments about refugees and Somali migrants during his Thursday night rally

Frey was reacting to a tweet about Trump's remarks about refugees not being placed in cities or states without the consent of a governor or mayor.

"Consent given. Immigrants and refugees are welcome in Minneapolis," he wrote on Twitter

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., a Democratic presidential candidate, also criticized Trump's comments. 

"The President just attacked Somali Americans in his rally in Minnesota. Immigrants and refugees have helped make our state a wonderful place to live and work — which is far more than this President has done," the Minnesota Democrat wrote on Twitter. "Stop using immigrants and refugees as political pawns!" 

Trump had been referring to an executive order issued on Sept. 26 that would allow state and local officials to block refugee resettlement from their communities.

"I issued an executive action, making clear that no refugees will be resettled in any city or any state without the express written consent of that city or that state," Trump said at his rally. "So speak to your mayor. You should be able to decide what is best for your own cities and for your own neighborhoods, and that’s what you have the right to do right now. And believe me, no other president would be doing that."

The executive order had been rolled out the same week the Trump administration announced it was slashing the number of refugees to be admitted to the United States to 18,000, from its current cap of 30,000.

Trump's comments on local control over refugee resettlement came after a previous section of his speech criticizing Somali refugee resettlement in Minnesota. 

"As you know, for many years, leaders in Washington brought large numbers of refugees to your state from Somalia," Trump said, to boos from the crowd, "without considering the impact on schools and communities and taxpayers."

Minnesota has the largest Somali refugee populations in the country, according to the CDC, with the majority of the population in Minnesota living in the Minneapolis-St. Paul region. 

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., who came to the United States as a refugee from Somalia, currently represents Minneapolis. 

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