WASHINGTON, DC — U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, today spoke on the Senate floor regarding a bill he will introduce this week to halt for six months any transfers from Guantanamo Bay in the aftermath of the controversial prisoner swap the Obama Administration made earlier this month.
“Americans need to know how the Obama Administration thinks it has made our nation safer by negotiating with terrorists to release these five dangerous terrorist leaders,” Sen. Cruz said. “Until President Obama can make his case and convince the American public that this swap was in our national interest, prudence dictates that all further transfers and releases from Guantanamo Bay should be off the table.”
Additionally, the negotiations to release the Taliban 5 raise serious questions that Americans deserve answers to, including:
- How many Americans did these five terrorist leaders directly or indirectly murder?
- How many American soldiers gave their lives to capture these five senior terrorist leaders?
- Given the President’s admission that there is “absolutely” a chance that they will return to actively waging war against the United States, how many Americans are at risk of being killed directly or indirectly by these terrorist leaders we have just let go?
- Finally, if the Taliban 5 do return to actively trying to kill Americans, how many American soldiers will again have to risk their lives or give their lives trying to kill or capture these terrorists?
Specifically the Senator’s legislation will:
- Immediately call for a six-month freeze on any federal funding for transferring detainees from Guantanamo Bay;
- To enforce this requirement, should the President choose to disregard this law, this legislation would require all funds expended for the transfer be deducted from the budget of the Executive Office of the President;
- Because we understand that conditions may arise that necessitate the release of an individual prisoner, and out of respect for the President’s special role in international matters, this legislation also provides a means for the President to ask Congress for a waiver of the six-month bar in an individual case;
- It would require that every order for the release of a Guantanamo Bay detainee after the six-month freeze be signed by the President. This would ensure that the fullest consideration and deliberation goes into the process.