Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Wednesday pushed back against arguments that a House bill hitting the floor this week to enhance security screenings for Syrian refugees will filter people based on religion.

"People understand the plight of those fleeing the Middle East. But they also want basic assurances for the safety of this country," Ryan said from the House floor. "We can be compassionate and we can also be safe."

The bill, which is slated for a House vote on Thursday, would prevent any refugees from Syria or Iraq from being admitted to the U.S. unless the FBI, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Director of National Intelligence can certify to Congress that each refugee does not pose a security threat.

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