- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 20, 2016

Incoming White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus on Sunday rejected the idea of registering people based on their religious beliefs — a fear among progressives, given President-elect Donald Trump’s rhetoric on Muslims — but said the new administration might freeze immigration from areas that harbor terrorists.

“There are some people that need to be prevented from coming into this country,” Mr. Priebus told NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

The current Republican National Committee chairman, who recently oversaw a successful election, was pressed on whether Mr. Trump would endorse a cataloging of those who follow Islam, particularly since his pick for national security adviser, retired Army Gen. Michael Flynn, once said a fear of Muslims is rational.

“I’m not going to rule out anything, but we’re not going to have a registry based on a religion,” Mr. Priebus said.

Instead, he hinted at programs similar to congressional Republicans’ efforts to pump the brakes on President Obama’s Syrian refugee program, saying migration from countries with a history of harboring terrorists might have to be suspended until there is a better vetting system in place.

Also Sunday, Mr. Priebus insisted that Mr. Trump will untangle the web of international business interests that could pose conflicts during his tenure in the White House.

Mr. Trump already is coming under fire for planning to turn over his business to his children, particularly after his daughter, Ivanka Trump, sat in on his meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Mr. Trump also met with three Indian business partners amid the transition process.

Mr. Priebus said the Trump administration will work with the White House counsel to follow ethical guidelines.

“All of these rules are going to be followed. I can assure you of that,” he told NBC.

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