Boehner: 'No Way' Terrorist Trials Will be Held in New York

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The top Republican in the House is vowing to prevent any trial of terror detainees at Guantanamo Bay from being held in New York City as leading Senate Republicans question Attorney General Eric Holder on the civilian status given to the Christmas Day bombing suspect.

Jan. 21: House Minority Leader John Boehner speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill. (AP Photo)
The top Republican in the House is vowing to prevent any trial of terror detainees at Guantanamo Bay from being held in New York City as leading Senate Republicans question Attorney General Eric Holder on the civilian status given to the Christmas Day bombing suspect.

House Minority Leader John Boehner said Wednesday the Obama administration doesn't have the votes to change the law to move detainees to U.S. territory for trial or to spend $500 million to refurbish the Thompson prison in Illinois to host the detainees who would be held there while awaiting trial in New York City.

"There is not going to be a trial in New York, I guarantee it. There is no appetite for the trials in Congress," Boehner, R-Ohio, said.

The leader added that any effort to do so will be used in the midterm election campaign.

"This is a big issue ... and a big issue we will campaign on this year," he added.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg also said Wednesday that he'd be "very happy" if the administration moved the trials out of lower Manhattan. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Sept. 11 suspects should not be tried in civilian court, calling the idea of trying alleged mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York City "stunning."

The Justice Department pushed back, though, defending its ability to "safely and securely" handle such international terrorism cases in Manhattan.

"The Justice Department is confident that it can safely prosecute this case in the Southern District of New York while minimizing disruptions to the community to the greatest extent possible, consistent with security needs," spokesman Dean Boyd said in a statement.

Lawmakers pressured the department on the Sept. 11 trials as the leading Republicans on four Senate committees demanded answers from Holder on why alleged Christmas bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was given civilian defendant status and a reading of Miranda rights rather than being treated "as an intelligence resource to be thoroughly interrogated in order to obtain potentially life-saving information."
Let's hold the trial at CTU. Jack can preside. :D

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