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Terry Branstad

Experts say states lack legal authority to block refugees

Governors across the U.S. have threatened to stop accepting Syrian refugees following last week's attacks in Paris, even as experts counter they lack legal authority to block the relocations.

Meanwhile, President Barack Obama, whose administration recently pledged to accept about 10,000 Syrian refugees, argued Monday that the United States needs to allow them because many are fleeing terrorism.

Some state leaders disagree with Obama's assertion the country can simultaneously welcome refugees seeking safety and ensure citizens' security. Several have called for a complete halt to resettlement, others for temporary delays and a few seek more information from federal...