Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) defended Donald Trump's controversial travel ban Wednesday, and insisted that Congress would block the president if he tried to enact a full-fledged ban on Muslims entering the United States.

"I disagree with it now and disagreed with it then, but that's not what this is," Ryan said in an interview with PBS NewsHour's Judy Woodruff set to air Wednesday night.

"I and many others around here would oppose" such a religious test, he said.

But he called it "totally reasonable and rational" to pause the country's refugee program to improve vetting standards and weed out terrorists who may have infiltrated refugee populations.

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