GOP senators propose sending ISIS fighters to Gitmo

Greg Nash

A group of Republicans led by Sens. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Steve Daines (R-Mont.) introduced legislation on Wednesday to send detained Islamic State in Iraq and Syria fighters to Guantanamo Bay.  

“Instead of closing the prison, the Administration should transfer detained ISIS fighters to Guantanamo Bay,” the senators said in a statement. 

{mosads}The legislation comes in the form of an amendment to the Senate’s 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, which authorizes Pentagon spending and activities. It’s also backed by Sens. Joni Ernst (Iowa), Ted Cruz (Texas), Jerry Moran (Kan.), Mark Kirk (Ill.), James Inhofe (Okla.), Pat Roberts (Kan.), and Tim Scott (S.C.). 

It urges the transfer of captured ISIS fighters to the detention facility in Cuba, as the administration tries to shut the facility down before President Obama leaves office in January. 

The defense bill keeps in place restrictions on using funds to transfer detainees to the U.S. or to construct or modify facilities in the U.S. to house detainees but allows for the administration to use funds to plan and design such a facility.  

Gardner, whose state is being considered as a location to house the detainees, has also co-sponsored another amendment which would strip out the provisions allowing the administration to use money to plan and design an alternative facility.  

“The Obama Administration lacks a coherent strategy to defeat ISIS, and that’s why it’s more important now than ever that we capitalize on our intelligence-gathering tools, such as the detention facility in Guantanamo Bay,” he said. 

Last week, Gardner introduced an amendment to the Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Appropriations Act to prohibit the using funds to transfer Guantanamo Bay detainees to the U.S. using American airspace. 

He also joined Republican colleagues on legislation to prevent the transfer or release of Guantanamo Bay detainees to all countries designated by the U.S. as state sponsors of terrorism. 

And in March, Gardner introduced a resolution rejecting the president’s plan to transfer detainees to a facility in the U.S. 

Tags Cory Gardner Guantánamo Bay ISIS Jerry Moran Jim Inhofe Mark Kirk Pat Roberts Ted Cruz Terrorism Tim Scott

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