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Paxton takes another shot at Syrian refugees

Whatever.

In the latest controversy over Syrians seeking refuge in Texas, the state’s top lawyer on Tuesday again asked a federal judge to halt the resettlement of people fleeing the war-torn country.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton told a U.S. district judge that the federal government should be temporarily barred from placing Syrian refugees in Texas after federal officials admitted they failed to provide the state with advance notice of a refugee family resettled in the state last week.

In a filing to Dallas-based U.S. District Judge David C. Godbey, Paxton said the Obama administration failed to notify Texas leaders about the resettlement of a seven-person family at least seven days in advance of their arrival — contrary to a federal court’s order, according to the attorney general’s office.

The government instead informed the judge about the resettlement the day the family arrived in Houston on Jan. 22.

In their notice to the court, lawyers for the U.S. Department of Justice said they “acknowledge and sincerely apologize” for not providing state leaders with notice about the resettlement.

“The failure to provide the required notice on the instant occasion was inadvertent, not intentional, and apparently occurred because of miscommunications among personnel within the Department of State,” they wrote.

Paxton also said the federal government broke the law by failing to provide adequate information about a new group of Syrian refugees that were scheduled to arrive in Texas on Monday.

The U.S. State Department’s list of refugee arrival shows 10 Syrians have resettled in Texas so far this year, all in Houston. The agency did provide adequate notice for three of those 10 refugees, according to court documents.

“The Obama administration continues settling Syrian refugees in our neighborhoods and communities under a cloak of secrecy,” Paxton said in a prepared statement. “The threat to our communities by foreign terrorists is real.”

See here for all past blogging on this topic. I’ll stipulate that the Justice Department screwed up here, and have earned a rap on the knuckles from the judge. But jeez, the bed-wetting fear from Paxton in that brief is just unbecoming. I guess it’s a good thing no one wears those “What Would Jesus Do?” bracelets any more, because I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t like the answer.

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