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November 16th, 2009

Guantanamo Bay Terrorist to be Iowa’s Next Door Neighbors?

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Written by: The Iowa Republican
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RPI Chair Strawn Calls on Braley to Reverse Support for Housing Guantanamo Detainees along Iowa Border.

GitmoAmid weekend reports that a prison complex mere miles from Iowa is emerging as the leading contender to house Guantanamo Bay terrorist detainees, Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn called on U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley to reverse his support for allowing these detainees to be brought to the United States for prosecution and incarceration.

Strawn noted that Braley, who represents the neighboring Iowa’s First Congressional District, had the opportunity just last month to vote to keep these terrorist detainees out of the United States when over 80 Democrats joined congressional Republicans to go on record in opposition to brining terrorist detainees to the United States.

“On the only vote specifically related to keeping these terrorists off American soil, Braley voted to welcome them with open arms. Now Iowans face the prospect of them being housed minutes from our state,” said Strawn.

“These terrorists pose a clear threat to the national security of our nation. It is time for Congressman Braley to stand up for his constituents, admit he was wrong, and tell President Obama that these prisoners are not welcome in the Heartland.”

On October 1, 2009 Braley voted (Roll Call #746) “no” on a vote to block terrorist detainees from entering the United States. The legislation, a motion to instruct conferees to a Homeland Security spending bill, passed the U.S. House without Braley’s support, by a 258-163 vote.

On November 14, 2009 numerous media outlets reported that Thomson Correctional Facility in Thomson, Illinois has emerged as a leading contender to house Guantanamo detainees. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) have both endorsed the proposal.

Strawn noted that Iowa’s Republican members of Congress, U.S. Reps. Tom Latham and Steve King both voted in support of the legislation keeping terrorist detainees out of the U.S. Additionally, Illinois U.S. Rep. Donald Manzullo, whose district includes Thomson and the prison complex, also voted to keep detainees off U.S. soil and opposes housing them at Thomson. Thomson is on the east bank of the Mississippi River, approximately ten miles from Clinton, Iowa.

Editor’s Notes:
Roll Call vote #746 can be found here.
House votes against bringing Gitmo detainees to U.S., Oct. 1, 2009.

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