Brian Kemp's Proposal for Georgia to Take in Afghan Refugees Leaves Conservatives Outraged

Conservatives across the nation have voiced their outrage after Georgia Governor Brian Kemp signalled his support for taking in Afghan refugees following the Taliban takeover of the country.

The Republican said it is "vitally important" to keep Afghan allies "safe from harm," with his spokesperson telling a local outlet there will need to be a thorough vetting process for resettlement.

"Joe Biden's failure to protect American citizens and our allies in Afghanistan is a stain on our nation," Kemp said in a statement Tuesday, as reported by the Georgia Recorder.

"His administration's lack of preparation and disastrous evacuation is now putting countless lives in serious danger from the Taliban. It is vitally important to keep those who partnered with American armed forces over the last 20 years safe from harm."

"Joe Biden has broken his word to the nation, the Afghans, and the world, but we as Americans cannot break our word to those who lent aid to us in our mission to defend freedom and bring justice to those who attacked our country on September 11."

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has said it is “vitally important” to keep Afghan allies “safe from harm,” with his spokesperson saying there will need to be a thorough vetting process for resettlement. Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Got to wonder what they actually have on Kemp?

— Mark Gonsalves (@MarkCongressGA7) August 17, 2021

Kemp's spokesman emphasized that any resettlement process would take months, if not years, and that a thorough vetting process would be needed.

The news has since sparked anger among conservatives and various Republican representatives, whom view the proposal as reckless and a waste of taxpayer money.

Outspoken Georgia representative Marjorie Taylor Greene was one of the first to voice her disapproval. "GA shouldn't welcome Afghan refugees while 1,000's of Americans are stranded," the Republican tweeted late Tuesday.

"Vet them outside the US, just like Remain in Mexico. Will this bring chain migration too? How much will it cost GA taxpayers in Gov assistance? The future of GA shouldn't be like MN that voted for Omar."

GA shouldn’t welcome Afghan refugees while 1,000’s of Americans are stranded.
Vet them outside the US, just like Remain in Mexico.
Will this bring chain migration too?
How much will it cost GA taxpayers in Gov assistance?
The future of GA shouldn’t be like MN that voted for Omar. https://t.co/Yc7mMk9dki

— Marjorie Taylor Greene 🇺🇸 (@mtgreenee) August 18, 2021

Greene has never held back on her stance on immigration, frequently and openly criticising the Biden administration's handling of the migrant surge at the U.S.-Mexico border, and calling for a new act to impose tighter restrictions on the southern border to stem the flow of migrants arriving in the U.S.

In March, Greene announced she was planning to introduce the "Protect America First Act" to secure the southern border, consisting of a four-year immigration moratorium for all immigrants during Biden's leadership.

Other prominent conservative figures followed suit in their criticism of Kemp.

"Gov Kemp [is] truly the worst governor," activist Stacy Rush said. "I'm all for assisting VETTED refugees. But we all know they won't be. Can't wait to vote for ANYONE other than Brian Kemp for GA gov," she added.

@GovKemp truly the worst governor.
I’m all for assisting VETTED refugees. But we all know they won’t be.
Can’t wait to vote for ANYONE other than Brian Kemp for GA gov https://t.co/Pe0mD7Zsu9

— 🇺🇸Anonymous Sources Stacy🇺🇸 (@Discoveringme40) August 17, 2021

Hopefully Kemp gets crushed in the primary. https://t.co/6pWOu4rvOG

— Ned Ryun (@nedryun) August 17, 2021

"Hopefully Kemp gets crushed in the primary," Ned Ryun, a former speechwriter for President Bush, tweeted, as conservative Georgia Republican Mark Gonsalves asked: "Got to wonder what they actually have on Kemp?"

On Monday night, Fox News host Tucker Carlson also criticized the Biden administration for helping re-locate Afghan refugees into the United States.

Carlson said that the Democratic president's actions demonstrate that he values Afghan lives over American ones. Carlson also referred to the resettlement of refugees inside the U.S. as an invasion.

However, refugee resettlement groups reacted positively to Kemp's statement.

"It's welcome news. It's always better to work in partnership and collaboration with the state government, and we're thrilled that Governor Kemp is supportive of welcoming Afghan refugees," Paedia Mixon, who serves as New American Pathways' chief executive, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"We've already seen an outpouring of support from the community, and these are folks who have worked with the American government and bring incredible skills with them."

Refugee Crisis

As the U.S. pulls out of Afghanistan, the Biden administration is scrambling to evacuate Afghan allies who aided the U.S. during its 20-year occupation. An estimated 88,000 Afghans who worked for the U.S. in Afghanistan and their family members are in the process of applying for special immigrant visas.

President Joe Biden has also devoted up to $500 million from the U.S. United States Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Fund to assist refugees fleeing from the nation.

The funds are for the "purpose of meeting unexpected urgent refugee and migration needs of refugees, victims of conflict, and other persons at risk as a result of the situation in Afghanistan," Biden's order, issued on Monday evening, read.

Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) applicants
Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) applicants crowd into the Herat Kabul Internet cafe seeking help applying for the SIV program on August 8, 2021 in Kabul, Afghanistan. Many worked as interpreters and translators for U.S. intelligence agencies and military branches and have applied to come to the U.S. as part of the Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program. Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

Biden's order draws its authority from the Migration and Refugee Assistance Act of 1962, he said. The act authorizes the president to help people displaced by conflict, persecution and other risks around the world.

Experts in Crisis, a humanitarian group, and Blake Hall, a former U.S. Army Captain, said the Taliban regularly executes people who helped U.S. forces.

Since 2014, the Taliban has murdered at least 300 Afghans who served as interpreters for U.S. forces, according to No One Left Behind, a veteran-led group for Afghan and Iraqi interpreters.

Massachusetts is ready to assist Afghan refugees seeking safety and peace in America.

(2/2)

— Charlie Baker (@MassGovernor) August 17, 2021
displaced Afghan families Kabul
Internally displaced Afghan families, who fled from Kunduz and Takhar province due to battles between Taliban and Afghan security forces, seen in Kabul on August 10, 2021. WAKIL KOHSAR/Getty Images

Desperate to Leave

Chaotic scenes at Kabul airport on Sunday showed Afghan civilians desperately clinging to aircraft and crowding air bridges in an attempt to catch a flight out of the country.

Alarming footage showed hundreds of Afghans running alongside the body of a U.S. aircraft as it taxied along the runway and prepared to take flight. A handful of men even appeared to crouch under the wing while holding on to the side of the aircraft.

Packed inside, 640 Afghan civilians were photographed standing side-by-side inside the plane's hold. Many panicked Afghans had pulled themselves onto the aircraft's half-open ramp.

One clip, uploaded by the Afghan Asvaka News agency, appears to show three young Afghan men falling mid-air from a plane leaving the city after allegedly losing grip of the exterior of the aircraft.

The men were hanging to the tires of a C-17 U.S. military aircraft, the publication reported.

Not a scene of Hollywood, it’s Just #Kabul air port, people want to run away, after the Capture of Kabul by the #Talibans #Afghanistan
By: @Mukhtarwafayee pic.twitter.com/ZLYieJm9mX

— Aśvaka - آسواکا News Agency (@AsvakaNews) August 16, 2021

Afghanistan’s Tragedy: Kabul Airport pic.twitter.com/P9E74ADURv

— Muslim Shirzad (@MuslimShirzad) August 16, 2021

The sheer helplessness at Kabul airport. It’s heartbreaking! #KabulHasFallen pic.twitter.com/brA3WRdPp8

— Ahmer Khan (@ahmermkhan) August 16, 2021

Following the withdrawal of the U.S. and its allies, the Taliban has managed to seize control of the nation in just over one week in a takeover that has left U.S. officials stunned.

On Sunday, August 15, militants poured into the capital, Kabul, as President Ashraf Ghani fled the country and the government effectively collapsed.

Aid workers and activists now hold concerns for the quality of life of Afghan citizens, particularly the rights of women and girls, as the Taliban takes control.

The deterioration of the nation has been measured over the past decade against selected terrorism and violence indices obtained from data from the Institute for Economics and Peace and graphed by Statista.

In a statement to Newsweek, Brian Kemp's office said that the Biden administration's actions in Afghanistan had put countless lives in danger.

"Joe Biden's failure to protect American citizens and our allies in Afghanistan is a stain on our nation. His administration's lack of preparation and disastrous evacuation is now putting countless lives in serious danger from the Taliban.

"It is vitally important to keep those who partnered with American armed forces over the last 20 years safe from harm. Joe Biden has broken his word to the nation, the Afghans, and the world, but we as Americans cannot break our word to those who lent aid to us in our mission to defend freedom and bring justice to those who attacked our country on September 11, 2001."

Quality of life Afghanistan
Quality of life measured on selected terrorism and violence indices in Afghanistan, as obtained from the Institute for Economics and Peace and graphed by Statista. Institute for Economics and Peace
displaced Afghan families
Internally displaced Afghan families, who fled from the northern province due to battle between Taliban and Afghan security forces, sit under the temporary tents in the courtyard of the Wazir Akbar Khan mosque in Kabul on August 13, 2021. WAKIL KOHSAR/Getty Images