Finally, FINALLY someone is stepping up to the plate to stop the insidious Obama release of GITMO unlawful enemy combatants.As reported by the Washington Examiner, “Sen. Kelly Ayotte introduced legislation Tuesday that would prohibit any transfers from Guantanamo Bay through September 2017, several months past the end of President Obama’s term.
The Detaining Terrorists to Protect Americans Act of 2016 would also permanently ban any transfers of detainees to the U.S., and prohibit the closure of the detention center in Cuba.
“Unfortunately, this administration seems more interested in releasing terrorists and bringing the remainder to the United States in order to close Guantanamo and fulfill a misguided and dangerous campaign promise,” Ayotte, R-N.H., said in a statement. “My legislation would suspend the administration’s dangerous releases that have allowed terrorists to return to the battlefield and permanently prevent the administration from bringing Guantanamo terrorists to the United States.”
Current law prohibits the transfer of detainees to the U.S. and the construction of any facilities in the U.S. to hold detainees, but that law is typically renewed each year in the annual defense policy bill. Ayotte’s bill would make those bans permanent.An administration official announced last month that former detainees had gone on to kill Americans following their release.
The transfer of two prisoners on Monday to Senegal brought the population of Gitmo down to 89 detainees.
The member of the Senate Armed Services Committee also promised to block Obama’s pick to be the Pentagon’s top lawyer over the delayed release of a report on current detainees required by law that is more than two months overdue.”
The safety of Americans should not be a pawn in some game of political ideology and campaign promises. We know the Fiscal Year 2016 National Security Authorization Act (NDAA) was held hostage by President Obama until he got more domestic spending released. I can assure you Obama won’t sign off on any NDAA that permanently restricts or bans his ability to shut down GITMO and release Islamic jihadists. There are two very interesting points to this play. As we go into a presidential election cycle, does Barack Obama REALLY want to make GITMO and the freeing of Islamic terrorists a campaign issue for someone else to defend? This is it, Obama is done come January 2017, but if he continues thumbing his nose at the law, there will be consequences — that is, if the GOP presidential nominee is savvy enough to hang this on the Democrat nominee. There’s no doubt the liberal progressive media will do everything to shield the progressive socialist nominee from having to take a position. But this is an issue about which the American people do not agree with Obama.
I know lefty detractors will try to blame this on Bush as well, but don’t forget, it was Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, among others, who described GITMO as some Soviet gulag and disparaged our troops there. It was the progressive left, who in 2006 had won the House and Senate, used GITMO as a political battering ram and demanded the Bush administration release those unlawful combatants. These are individuals captured on the battlefield, and this is not a law enforcement action. They are not prisoners of war and deserve no rights — certainly not to be lawyered up for trials.Does the legislation of Sen. Ayotte come a little too late? Perhaps, and we must understand Obama possesses a sense that he’s above the law anyway. There must be immediate consequences — by way of the power of the purse.
And that brings me to the second point – and possibly the most depressing reality about the GOP-controlled House and Senate.
Ask yourself, where did the appropriations come from enabling Obama to open the U.S. Embassy in Cuba? Who on Capitol Hill approved the staffing appropriations? And where did the appropriations come for the assignment of U.S. Marine Security Guard personnel in Cuba? The frustration many have is that the most powerful of the three branches of government is not the executive, it is the legislative. It is a GOP-controlled House and Senate that has so often appeared impotent in stemming the tide of executive branch overreach.
My assessment is that Sen. Ayotte’s bill, albeit well-intentioned, is not going to be effective…why? Because to this point, name me any major executive action that was unconstitutional at its core intent, that was halted by the GOP-controlled House and Senate. The proof is in the pudding. Will this pass and make it into the NDAA, or die on the floor of the U.S. Senate as an amendment that won’t be able to achieve the requisite 60 votes?