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Political News and Commentary from the Right

How Will Importing Dangerous Terrorists Make America Safer?

by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)

Today the Obama Administration is announcing it plans to import the terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay prison – some of the most dangerous terrorists in the world – to the Thomson Correctional Center located outside Chicago, Illinois.  This decision puts the interests of liberal special interest groups before the safety and security of the American people.  Here’s how I addressed this issue at a press conference on Capitol Hill this morning:

The American people don’t want dangerous terrorists imported on to U.S. soil, and time after time the House and Senate have reaffirmed this position with bipartisan votes rejecting the Administration’s plan. Yet this Administration is defying the will of the American people and importing them anyway. What’s worse, this decision is completely unnecessary considering that these terrorists were already being tried by military commissions, which were specifically designed under the law to prosecute such heinous acts.

Republicans have offered a better solution.  In May, we introduced the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act (H.R. 2294) to (1) affirm Congress’ opposition to transferring or releasing terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay prison into the United States; (2) prohibit the Administration from transferring or releasing any terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay to any state without express approval from the state’s governor and legislature; and (3) prohibit the President from transferring or releasing a terrorist detainee into the United States unless he provides notification and certification to Congress.  Our proposal reflects the will of the American people, and it puts a premium on their safety and security first and foremost.

In their rush to bring Guantanamo Bay terrorists on to U.S. soil, Washington Democrats have repeatedly failed to articulate an overarching strategy to confront and defeat the terrorist threat.  At the very least, the American people deserve to know how importing these dangerous terrorists and giving them the same rights as U.S. citizens will make us any safer.  I have yet to see a good explanation, but Republicans will stand with Illinois families and seek every remedy at our disposal to stop this dangerous plan.

December 16, 2009 Posted by | War on Terror | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

President Has “More Effective” Method to Get Intel from Terrorists – What Is It?

by Dennis Prager on Townhall.com

In his latest address – on Guantanamo detainees – President Obama said something of extraordinary importance that seems to have been missed by the media:

“I know some have argued that brutal methods like water-boarding were necessary to keep us safe. I could not disagree more…I reject the assertion that these are the most effective means of interrogation.”

As this President chooses his words carefully, these claims need to be understood.

Note that Mr. Obama did not say what nearly all opponents of water-boarding say – that water-boarding is not an effective method of extracting reliable, life-saving, information. He took no issue with former Vice-President Dick Cheney’s claims that water-boarding or “enhanced interrogation” saved American and other lives. Indeed, he clearly leaves open the possibility, even the likelihood, that this claim is accurate. Rather, what he says is that “methods like water-boarding were not necessary to keep us safe” – not necessary, not ineffective. And why does he believe this? Because they are not “the most effective means of

interrogation.”

In other words, the President’s view seems to be that water-boarding the three terrorists did elicit vital, life-saving, information. However, he contends that we could have obtained all that information using means of interrogation that were both non-brutal and more effective.

More

May 26, 2009 Posted by | War on Terror | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Cantor (R-VA) Joins House GOP Members to Introduce Keep Terrorists Out of America Act

Press Release from Representative Eric Cantor (R-VA)

May 7, 2009
Contact:Brad Dayspring
202-226-5249

WASHINGTON, DC – House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) today joined several Republican colleagues to introduce the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act — legislation intended to prevent prisoners being held at Guantanamo Bay from being relocated to the United States.

The Keep Terrorists Out of America Act requires pre-approval from governors and state legislatures to transfer or release any terrorist detainee into their respective state. The legislation establishes strict criteria and certification standards that must be met before any detainee is released into the United States.

Cantor is also an original co-sponsor of H.R. 1186, which seeks to prohibit prisoners at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility from being transferred to federal prisons or military bases in Virginia.

At a press conference earlier today on Capitol Hill, Mr. Cantor made the following statement:

“This is the one area where I’m going to take a protectionist stance—protection from terrorists. If there’s ever a time for protectionism, this is it.

“Coming from Virginia, where there are two facilities on the list of potential sites for relocating these terrorists, I am particularly passionate about making sure that the President’s desire, and some in this congress, to bring these enemy combatants to the soil of the United States does not happen. With the communities surrounding Naval Base Norfolk and those around Quantico, in their interest—this must not happen.”

View the Video Here

Facts on the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act (Courtesy of the Office of the Republican Leader):

Affirming Congress’ Opposition to the Release and Transfer of Terrorists. The bill affirms Congress’ opposition to transferring or releasing terrorists held at the Guantanamo Bay prison into the United States. Most Americans do not support releasing these terrorists from Guantanamo Bay prison and transferring them into the United States. The bill gives Congress an opportunity to show that it stands with the American people on this critical matter, and opposes the release and transfer of these terrorists.

Governor & State Legislature Pre-Approval. The measure prohibits the Administration from transferring or releasing any terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay to any state without express approval from the state’s governor and legislature, and certifies to Congress that strict requirements have been met. For example, the Administration must certify to the respective governor and state legislature that the detainee does not pose a security risk to the United States. The certifications must be made 60 days before any transfer or release.

Presidential Certification Requirements. The measure prohibits the President from transferring or releasing a terrorist detainee into the United States unless he provides the following notification and certification to Congress regarding:

• The name of the detainee and transfer/release location in the United States.
• The release/transfer would not negatively impact continued prosecution of the detainee.
• The release/transfer would not negatively impact continued detention of the detainee.
• The ability of federal judges to release detainees into the United States.

May 7, 2009 Posted by | War on Terror | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Dems block funding to close Gitmo

from Move America Forward

Democrats today killed a request by President Obama for $81 million to close Gitmo. It’s a good start, but the Democrats could still fund the closure in other ways.

We at Move America Forward have been on the forefront of the fight to keep Gitmo open. Obama has no plans for the dangerous terrorists locked up on cuba in America’s prison.

Closing the prison “just never stood up to logic. There is no place on the planet to take the worst of the worst that would treat them as well as they are treated at [Guantanamo],” said Rep. Steve King, Iowa Republican, who visited the facility a month ago.

“The bottom line really is that [if the prisoners are released], innocent people will die and some of them likely will be Americans,” he said.

A contingent from MAF visited the camps on Gitmo and found the same thing Obama’s administration found: The prison is well run and abides by all Geneva conventions. In fact, the prisoners are treated with kid gloves with meal plans given to them every week, doctors and nurses at their behest, English and Art lessons, and plenty of time outside to play soccer with other prisoners.

The Democrats did the right thing today. Now let’s see if they continue to protect Americans by keeping gitmo open.

Here’s the story from the Washington Times:

House Democratic leaders Monday dropped President Obama’s request for $81 million to close the Guantanamo Bay prison camp, bowing to strong Republican criticism that the administration lacks a plan to relocate terror suspects detained there.

Mr. Obama requested the money as part a spending bill for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but Democratic appropriators left it out of the bill circulated Monday among House Appropriations Committee staffers.

Republicans have been criticizing Mr. Obama for rushing to keep his campaign promise to close the prison camp at the U.S. Navy base on Cuba without a plan for what to do with the roughly 240 terrorism suspects currently held on the island.

Closing the prison “just never stood up to logic. There is no place on the planet to take the worst of the worst that would treat them as well as they are treated at [Guantanamo],” said Rep. Steve King, Iowa Republican, who visited the facility a month ago.

“The bottom line really is that [if the prisoners are released], innocent people will die and some of them likely will be Americans,” he said.

Democratic leaders were not immediately available to comment.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, previously dismissed the Republicans’ objections as another example of partisan obstructionism by the minority.

“It would be highly irresponsible for Republicans to attempt to hold up funding as part of their just-say-no strategy,” Reid spokesman Jim Manley said.

Senate Democrats have not come out in support of using the war-spending bill to close the prison camp, a strong signal that the move by House appropriators could kill the funding in the bill.

The administration could still move forward with Mr. Obama’s promise to close the detention center by January 2010 and seek funding through another supplemental spending bill.

Lawmakers in both parties oppose bringing the prisoners to their states. Speculation about shipping the terror suspects to prisons in states including Florida, Montana and Virginia has met stiff resistance. A number of foreign countries also do not want to take the prisoners, either.

The White House has not announced where it intends to move the detainees.

The supplemental spending bill circulated Monday carried a price tag of about $94 billion, about $10 billion more than Mr. Obama requested.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, made a series of speeches in recent weeks blasting the president’s push to close the Guantanamo Bay camp.

Last week, House Majority Leader John Boehner, Ohio Republican, put out a Web video that asked: “What are Democrats doing to keep America safe?” It charged that Mr. Obama’s decision to close Guantanamo and end harsh interrogation techniques that some criticize as torture would put the United States at risk of another terror 9/11-type attack.

On the video, Michigan Rep. Peter Hoekstra of Michigan, ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, says, “The real question we now face is, What is President Obama’s strategy to confront this threat from radical jihadists?”

About 100,000 viewers had visited the video Web site as of Monday, according to Mr. Boehner’s office.

On the Senate floor Monday, Mr. McConnell said the appropriate time for Congress to debate closing the prison camp is after “the administration has a plan to safely detain, prosecute, or transfer these detainees.”

“With no safe alternative, this is the only sensible approach,” he said.

The Defense Department has confirmed that 18 former detainees had returned to the battlefield and at least 40 more are suspected of having rejoined terrorist networks after being released from Guantanamo.

May 5, 2009 Posted by | Obama | , , , , | Leave a comment