Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez floated a high minimum number of refugee visas for Afghans fleeing their war-torn homeland — but said it is just a starting point.
The New York Democrat said a minimum of 200,000 visas are needed but quickly added "whatever amount is necessary" should be accommodated.
“I believe we need to move, and the administration needs to move as quickly as possible and as expansively as possible, ensuring that we are raising the amount of refugee visas to whatever amount is necessary,” she said in an interview.
“I would say the rock bottom is 200,000, but I think it should be whatever is necessary ... And that needs to be expedited as soon as possible," said the leader of the far-left House bloc dubbed "the Squad."
The congresswoman voted for legislation to increase the number of special immigrant visas for Afghan nationals who worked with NATO or the U.S. government in Afghanistan. The bill passed in the House with only 16 votes against it and will now move to a vote in the Senate.
House Republicans broadly support visas for Afghans who assisted the U.S. military, as well as their immediate families. Ocasio-Cortez previously expressed support for Afghan refugees fleeing the rule of the Taliban.
"We must waste no time or expense in helping refugees safely and swiftly leave Afghanistan," Ocasio-Cortez said earlier this month. "We must immediately welcome them to the U.S. and provide real support as they rebuild their lives."
Tens of thousands of Afghan allies of America remain stranded in Afghanistan amid the Taliban's swift takeover of the country.
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Original Author: Matthew Miller
Original Location: AOC drops 'rock bottom' number for Afghan refugee visas