Ten Republican governors thus far have asked President Joe Biden’s administration to resettle Afghans in their states as the State Department plans to bring thousands to the United States for permanent resettlement.
As U.S. Special Forces withdraw from Afghanistan, the Biden administration has vowed to bring to the U.S. at least 22,000 Afghans via the refugee resettlement program. On Thursday, though, refugee contractors stated the number of Afghans looking to resettle in the U.S. is between 100,000 to 300,000.
Most of the Afghans include those who are being fast-tracked for Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs) — reserved for interpreters and their family members who worked with the American military during the Afghanistan war.
In addition, Biden’s State Department has created the P-2 visa for Afghans who are not eligible for SIVs but who say they worked for military contractors and organizations in coordination with the American military.
Without a clear total bound for resettlement and a detailed vetting process, ten Republican governors have asked the Biden administration to resettle Afghans in their states.
Thus far, they include:
- South Carolina’s Henry McMaster
- Maryland’s Larry Hogan
- Massachusetts’ Charlie Baker
- Utah’s Spencer Cox
- Georgia’s Brian Kemp
- Arkansas’ Asa Hutchinson
- Arizona’s Doug Ducey
- Iowa’s Kim Reynolds
- Oklahoma’s Kevin Stitts
- Vermont’s Phil Scott
“We are eager to continue that practice and assist with the resettlement of individuals and families fleeing Afghanistan, especially those who valiantly helped U.S. troops, diplomats, journalists, and other civilians over the past 20 years,” Cox said in a statement.
Kemp suggested in a statement that he is open to resettling Afghans in Georgia, stating, “it is vitally important to keep those who partnered with American armed forces over the last 20 years safe from harm.”
Hogan, in a statement, said more refugee resettlement in Maryland “is the least we can do” to help Afghans, while Baker said in a statement that Massachusetts is looking to resettle refugees “seeking safety and peace in America.”