October 1, 2009
House Overwhelming Passes Motion to Prevent Transfer of Guantanamo Prisoners to the U.S. or the Release of Detainee Photographs
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. House today voted 258-163 on a motion to include language in the final fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security Appropriations conference report that would prevent any prisoner detained at Guantanamo Bay from being transferred to the U.S. for any purpose. The motion also would also require the inclusion of language to prevent the release of detainee photographs, and would require a 72 hour period for Members of Congress to view the final legislation before it is brought to the House floor for a vote.
“It has been nine months since the Obama Administration announced that they would close Guantanamo, yet Congress has not received any substantive plan on what to do with the dangerous terrorists detained there. It is clear that the American people do not want these terrorists transferred to their communities, and there is no valid reason to allow this kind of risk on our soil,” House Appropriations Ranking Republican Jerry Lewis said.
“This bill is intended to protect the American people from all threats, including the warped intentions of terrorists and radical extremists. The motion today would strengthen this legislation and prevent the transfer of terrorists to our hometowns, where they have the ability to abuse our legal system and terrorize our communities,” Homeland Security Appropriations Ranking Republican Hal Rogers said.
The motion – offered by Rep. Hal Rogers - would prevent detainee transfers to the U.S. for purposes of prosecution. In addition, the motion includes language to prevent any individual that has previously been detained at Guantanamo and already released or transferred from receiving any U.S. immigration benefit, including visas and asylum status.
Today’s motion also includes language - already approved by the Senate and supported by the Administration - that would prevent the release of detainee photographs. The release of these photos could provide enemies of the United States with information that could endanger U.S. troops and civilians.
In addition, the motion requires a 72-hour viewing period for the final legislation before it is brought to the House floor for a final vote.