Gov. Tom Wolf says his administration will continue working with the federal government to resettle Syrian refugees in Pennsylvania following the Paris terrorist attacks.
Wolf, a Democrat, said Monday that the federal government believes it can handle an additional 10,000 refugees that the White House said in September that it would accept from Syria.
Pennsylvania's Department of Human Services says 14 Syrian refugees have arrived in the state since Oct. 1.
Jim Kenney, Philadelphia's new Mayor-elect, supported Governor Wolf's decision and released the following statement.
Philadelphia has a long history of being a city of refuge for those in need--welcoming Quakers, Irish immigrants, Sudanese refugees and many others. I applaud Governor Wolf's decision to work with the federal government to properly screen and resettle Syrian refugees in Pennsylvania. In keeping with our city's history, I look forward to working with him and welcoming refugees seeking a safe home to Philadelphia.
In Delaware, Democratic Gov. Jack Markell is standing by his support for President Obama's decision to provide asylum for Syrian refugees in the United States, despite Republican calls not to accept refugees.
The head of the Delaware Republican Party, along with state Sen. Colin Bonini, a GOP candidate for governor, urged Markell on Monday not to accept Syrian refugees in the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris.
Markell responded that former Republican President Ronald Reagan was committed to welcoming those seeking safety from fear and persecution.
According to state officials, the U.S. State Department says no Syrian refugees have arrived in Delaware, but Delaware health and social service officials are aware of three families who settled in another state before moving to Delaware, two in 2013 and another in 2014.
Eight governors, all Republicans, say they're opposing efforts to relocate Syrian refugees in their states or they're demanding to know more about the federal government's security procedures to screen Syrian refugees.
Lavinia Limon of the U.S Committee for Refugees and Immigration says the Refugee Act of 1980 prevents governors from legally blocking refugees from settling in their communities.