King: Take KSM and 'bunk him with Jerry Nadler'

Despite the torrent of GOP outrage to the White House's decision to prosecute the professed masterminds of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in civilian court, at least one lawmaker admits that not much can be done to stop it from happening.

Even conservative lawmaker Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), not one known for shirking from an uphill fight, told The Hill on Friday that little can be done legislatively.

ADVERTISEMENT
“I don’t know how we do [stop the case from going to civil court]. What can we do? Raise the level of public indignation; I think it’s a huge vulnerability," King said in an interview hours after Attorney General Eric Holder announced his intention to try five terrorism suspects, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, in New York City.

King was hard-pressed to think of any of his colleagues who would support the decision -- "Even Jerry Nadler can’t think this is a good idea."

But Nadler, the liberal New York City lawmaker who represents Ground Zero where the World Trade Center's twin towers once stood, “applauded” Holder earlier Friday for “the decision to bring those individuals responsible for the attack on the World Trade Center to New York.”

Upon learning of the Judiciary panel's Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties subcommittee chairman's approval, King retorted, "Well, then take [KSM] over and bunk him with Jerry Nadler.”

Nadler made clear that he believes New York is up to the task of prosecuting the alleged terrorists. In a release issued Friday afternoon, he said, "I invite any of my colleagues who say that they are afraid to bring detainees into the United States to face trial to come to New York and see how we handle them."

Republicans from both sides of the Capitol flooded reporters' inboxes Friday with statements of incredulity that the White House would not try self-confessed architects of the Sept. 11 attacks in a military tribunal, as they are currently considered enemy combatants.


More in In The Know

Carole King: Bill to protect Rockies 'will pass'

Read more »