Senate GOP bill would halt Gitmo transfers
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Senate Republicans are hoping to crack down on President Obama's ability to transfer Guantanamo Bay detainees as he works to shutter the controversial Cuban prison in his final year.

Sen. Kelly AyotteKelly Ann AyotteSinema, Gallagher fastest lawmakers in charity race New Hampshire senator to ask 2020 Dems to back repeal of state residency law Schultz recruiting GOP insiders ahead of possible 2020 bid MORE (R-N.H.) introduced legislation Tuesday to prohibit permanently closing the facility. Her proposal would make permanent a current ban on bringing detainees into the United States and block the White House from releasing detainees to other countries through September 2017.

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"Our nation needs a common-sense detention and interrogation policy that keeps captured terrorists off the battlefield and enables us to gather the intelligence necessary to prevent future attacks," she said in a statement. "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." 

GOP Sens. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrTillis dodges primary challenge in NC Tillis dodges primary challenge in NC Trump Jr. on testimony: 'Glad this is finally over' MORE (N.C.), James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeSenate rejects effort to block Trump's Qatar, Bahrain arms sales Senate rejects effort to block Trump's Qatar, Bahrain arms sales Shanahan: 'No concerns' about FBI background check for nomination MORE (Okla.), Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerHillicon Valley: Democratic state AGs sue to block T-Mobile-Sprint merger | House kicks off tech antitrust probe | Maine law shakes up privacy debate | Senators ask McConnell to bring net neutrality to a vote Hillicon Valley: Democratic state AGs sue to block T-Mobile-Sprint merger | House kicks off tech antitrust probe | Maine law shakes up privacy debate | Senators ask McConnell to bring net neutrality to a vote Lawmakers demand answers on Border Patrol data breach MORE (Miss.), Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsEPA exempts farms from reporting pollution tied to animal waste EPA exempts farms from reporting pollution tied to animal waste Conservatives spark threat of bloody GOP primaries MORE (Kan.), Tim ScottTimothy (Tim) Eugene ScottOn The Money: Trump weighs emergency declaration for Mexico tariffs | GOP senators look to rein in Trump on trade | Powell says Fed may cut rates if trade war hurts economy On The Money: Trump weighs emergency declaration for Mexico tariffs | GOP senators look to rein in Trump on trade | Powell says Fed may cut rates if trade war hurts economy Trump floats new emergency declaration to impose Mexico tariffs MORE (S.C.), Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoBipartisan senators propose forcing EPA to set drinking water standard for 'forever chemicals' Bipartisan senators propose forcing EPA to set drinking water standard for 'forever chemicals' August recess under threat as yearly spending bills pile up MORE (W.Va.), Steve Daines (Mont.), and Jerry MoranGerald (Jerry) MoranSenate Dem to reintroduce bill with new name after 'My Little Pony' confusion Senate Dem to reintroduce bill with new name after 'My Little Pony' confusion Senators clinch votes to rebuke Trump on Saudi arms sale MORE (Kan.) have signed onto Ayotte's legislation.

Ayotte has also placed a hold on Jennifer O'Connor's nomination to be the Pentagon's general counsel as she angles to get the administration to hand over information on Guantanamo Bay detainee transfers. 

Sen. Mark KirkMark Steven KirkEx-GOP Sen. Kirk registers to lobby The global reality behind 'local' problems Dems vow swift action on gun reform next year MORE (R-Ill.) also introduced legislation this week to limit the administration's ability to transfer detainees to unstable countries or state sponsors of terrorism. 

Countries that would be impacted by the ban include Yemen, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Iran. 

"Allowing the transfer of these dangerous criminals to terror hotspots only makes it easier for them to re-join in the fight against America," Kirk said.

Republican Sens. Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchTrump to award Medal of Freedom to economist Arthur Laffer Trump gambles in push for drug import proposal Biden's role in Anita Hill hearings defended by witness not allowed to testify MORE (Utah), Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerMcConnell defends Trump amid backlash: 'He gets picked at every day' McConnell defends Trump amid backlash: 'He gets picked at every day' The Hill's Morning Report — Uproar after Trump's defense of foreign dirt on candidates MORE (Colo.), James Lankford (Oka.), James Inhofe (Okla.) and Jerry Moran (Kan.) have signed onto Kirk's bill. 

The administration handed over a plan to close the facility earlier this year, including moving some detainees into the United States. The move would allow the president to fulfill a long-standing campaign pledge. 

Republicans, however, quickly panned his plan. 

The new GOP bills come after the Pentagon announced Monday that it had transferred two Guantanamo Bay detainees to Senegal. The Obama administration is working to reduce the prison's population and close the facility before the president leaves office. 

The latest transfer brought the number of detainees at Guantanamo Bay to 89. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Defense: Trump doubles down on claim Iran attacked tankers | Iran calls accusations 'alarming' | Top nuke official quietly left Pentagon | Pelosi vows Congress will block Saudi arms sale Overnight Defense: Trump doubles down on claim Iran attacked tankers | Iran calls accusations 'alarming' | Top nuke official quietly left Pentagon | Pelosi vows Congress will block Saudi arms sale McConnell defends Trump amid backlash: 'He gets picked at every day' MORE (R-Ky.) slammed Obama Tuesday for releasing detainees over concerns they could rejoin terrorist groups.  

"This is precisely the wrong time to send experienced, hardened fighters back in to the conflict," he said. “We must use the remaining months of the Obama Administration as a year of transition to better posture our military to meet the threats we will face." 

Republicans are also pushing the Obama administration to present a new plan to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) after terrorist attacks in Brussels last month.

This story was updated at 4:32 p.m.