He makes an exception for Israel, though.
Presidential candidate Donald Trump wants to ban Muslims from coming to the United States. The U.S. House has restricted travelers from Iraq. Now Florida candidate Carlos Beruff, a Republican, wants to ban anyone from a Middle Eastern country–with the exception of Israel, of course–from entering the United States.
Monday evening, about 200 Republicans gathered at Deicke Auditorium in Plantation, FL, where Beruff gave a speech. When an audience member asked him about his “position on Muslim immigration,” Beruff responded with the following:
“Ah ha,” he said. “I think our immigration department is broken. And I don’t think it’s safe to allow anybody from the Middle East into this country.”
The room erupted into cheers, and once the cheering died down, he added, “until they fix it.”
Later, a reporter asked him how broad his proposed ban would be.
“I think it’s pretty simple. We have a system that doesn’t work. When they fix that, I don’t care. But right now we have a terrorist threat that’s very real. You want to ignore it, but I don’t,” Beruff said. He went on to add that it would apply to “Pretty much anybody that’s got a terrorist organization in it, which is pretty much all the Middle East.”
He excluded Israel, saying “I think Israel’s security measures are pretty strong. Israel is an exception.”
Unlike Trump’s ban, which would ban only Muslims entering the U.S., Beruff says that his ban would target Muslims and Christians alike. “Unless you can tell me how you get the system to be able to do that correctly, I think it applies to everybody,” he said.
The Sun Sentinel reported on Beruff’s comments, which quickly drew criticism from the Democratic Party.
Representative Patrick Murphy, a Democratic nominee for the U.S. Senate, condemned Beruff’s comments. Murphy released a statement in which he said, “Carlos Beruff’s statement is not only disgraceful, but his full embrace of Donald Trump’s extreme bigotry is flat-out un-American. Mr. Beruff’s asinine comments and out-of-touch values are not just dangerous to our democracy, but are absolutely unacceptable for any candidate who wants to represent Floridians in the U.S. Senate.”
The communications director for Florida’s Democratic Party, Max Steele, also released a statement, saying that Beruff’s comments show he “lacks both the temperament and common sense to represent a proudly diverse state like Florida in the United States Senate. A blanket ban on ‘anybody from the Middle East’ entering the United States is as absurdly misguided as it is bigoted.”
Beruff’s campaign clapped back by criticizing the Democratic Party’s “attacks on his common sense position regarding immigration.” He took aim at President Obama as well, saying the immigration system has become “a serious national security risk” under President Obama.
He didn’t stop there. Tuesday afternoon, he released a statement saying that “Democrats refuse to deal with reality.” Beruff continued, “They make things up, sensationalize common sense solutions and exacerbate this obsession over political correctness. I stand by my answer and will repeat: anyone with ties, or possible ties, to terrorism should not be allowed in the United States.”
The night prior, on Monday evening, Beruff, an immigrant of Cuban descent himself, said “…I don’t think it’s safe to allow anybody from the Middle East into this country,” and that his proposed ban would apply to “Pretty much anybody that’s got a terrorist organization in it, which is pretty much all the Middle East.”
So you can pretty much deduce that, according to Beruff, all you have to do to be suspected of having ties to terrorism, is be from the Middle East. Unless, of course, you’re from Israel. Then you’re cool.
Gosh, where was he radicalized at?
It should be noted that in 2013, the year of the Boston bombing, when Americans were killed on American soil due to a terrorist attack, the Jewish Daily Forward noted that you are more likely to be killed by a toddler than a terrorist.
According to numbers from the Center for Disease Control’s 2011 reports, you are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack, and 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack.
If we want to ban something, perhaps it should be xenophobia.