Democrat Sen. Ben Cardin on Monday said terrorist organizations are using President Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban as a tool for recruitment.
“I talked to King Abdullah from Jordan just about ten days ago, he mentioned that,” said the senior senator from Maryland, speaking on CNN’s New Day. “He said ISIS is losing its caliphate, losing its territory and they need to recruit to be relevant.”
“We give them material for recruitment when we impose what is said to be a ‘Muslim ban’,” he added. “That’s how it’s perceived internationally. That’s used by ISIS to say, ‘It’s relevant to join us in this fight against the West.’”
In the interview, Cardin celebrated the fact that courts had so-far halted the ban. He called the executive order that introduced the ban “ill-conceived.”
“We hope we’ll never see it again,” said Cardin, who is the ranking member on the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.
Trump signed the executive order last month barring foreign nationals from Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Iraq and Yemen from entering the country for 90 days, all refugees for 120 days, and all refugees from Syria indefinitely.
But a federal appeals court ruled Thursday that Trump’s travel ban will remain blocked after an earlier court raised concerns about the constitutionality of the ban, among other things.
The unanimous ruling from the three-judge panel means citizens of the seven majority -Muslim countries are able to travel to the US, despite Trump’s executive order.
The White House announced Friday that they will not immediately appeal the decision to the Supreme Court and are working on “possible tweaks” to the executive order.
The President is currently examining several options to save the ban and is expected to introduce the changes next week.