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Hudson's GITMO Amendment Added to FY17 Defense Spending Bill

June 15, 2016
Press Release
June 15, 2016
Hudson’s GITMO Amendment Added to FY17 Defense Spending Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C.– Today, U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) spoke on the House floor in support of his amendment to prohibit the administration from transferring any detainees out of the military prison at Guantanamo Bay. His amendment – which, if enacted, would be the strictest prohibition of transfers yet – was adopted by voice to the Department of Defense Appropriations Act for FY17 (H.R. 5293) which will receive a House vote tomorrow.
To watch Rep. Hudson’s remarks in support of this amendment, click here and here. The transcripts are below.
“Thank you, Mr. SPEAKER, I rise today to urge my colleagues to support my amendment that prohibits funds from this appropriations bill from being used to transfer prisoners from Guantanamo Bay.
Over the weekend, we were tragically reminded of the very real threat of radical Islam when 49 Americans were murdered in the worst terrorist attack on our soil since 9/11. As we continue to mourn and pray for the victims and their families, we must recommit our efforts to defeat those who want to harm us.
We’re at war with radical Islamic extremists, yet our commander-in-chief is so focused on closing Guantanamo Bay that he ignores the danger posed by the terrorists detained there. The American people are counting on us to protect them.
This is a prison that houses some of the world’s most dangerous war criminals and hardened terrorists - including some responsible for 9/11. How can this administration guarantee that these prisoners won’t return to the battlefield?
The fact is, they can’t. In a gut-wrenching admission, a senior Pentagon official told the House Foreign Affairs Committee that former Guantanamo inmates are responsible for the deaths of our fellow Americans overseas. And, according to the Washington Post, the Obama administration admitted at least 12 detainees released from the prison have launched attacks, killing about a half-dozen Americans. This confirms, Mr. Speaker, our worst fears.
The American people get it and are strongly opposed to closing Guantanamo. Our constituents continue to agree these prisoners do not belong in our backyards and shouldn’t be transferred to other countries where there is a great risk they’ll be released and return to the battlefield.
In the last several months alone, our world has been rocked by terrorist attacks from San Bernardino to Paris and most recently, in Orlando. Many of our biggest national security threats no longer come from traditional nations but from determined groups of extremists – like these very detainees – whose sole desire is to kill Americans. The War on Terror is an ongoing battle against evil and we must remain vigilant.
We must take every action necessary to block the president’s plan to close Guantanamo Bay. My amendment is another hurdle that will make sure it never happens. I urge my colleagues to put the safety and security of the American people first and support this amendment.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I reserve the balance of my time.”
“Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would again urge my colleagues to support this amendment. 
I understand the points raised by my colleague, and I think there are some valid points that ought to be discussed, but I think the bottom line here the folks who are left at Guantanamo are the worst of the worst.
These are some of the most violent, dangerous criminals in the world, and this president has shown that he is willing to transfer them to other places where the risk of them escaping back to the battlefield is very high.
And so, at this time, I believe we can’t risk that, and I think the American people are counting on us to put their interests first. So I will close by urging my colleagues to please support this amendment. With that, Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.”