Today, U.S. Congressman Harold “Hal” Rogers (KY-05) offered a three-pronged amendment in the Homeland Security FY 2010 Full Committee Mark Up that will add a vital requirement for a detailed, individualized threat assessment of each Guantanamo Bay detainee, add detainees to the “No Fly List”, and prohibit detainees from being granted a legal immigration status. The amendment passed 34-24.
“I am pleased that this amendment passed the committee today. It is without question that any plan for closing Guantanamo Bay must include a detailed threat assessment for each and every detainee,” said Rogers. “We cannot ask the American people to endure such risks when the threat is not even known or made clear to Congress. Even more infuriating is that despite the raging debate on this issue across the Capitol, the Administration is thumbing its nose at our concerns and moving forward with the transfer of these terrorists. Now is not the time for political games, the American people deserve to know the threat that these individuals pose to their families’ safety and well-being. Finally, the amendment I offered will add these detainees to the “No Fly List.” and restrict them from receiving immigration benefit programs. Commonsense would tell you that under no circumstances should detainees be moved to the front of the line whether that be to board an aircraft or obtaining legal status within our borders.”
Rogers’ amendment will complement the work the Appropriations Committee has already done on requiring a plan for the proposed disposition of each detainee prior to each transfer by adding a vital requirement for a detailed, individualized threat assessment of each detainee. It will also require that the names of all the Guantanamo detainees are placed on the No Fly list- a requirement that the entire House supported last week during the consideration of the TSA Authorization Bill. Finally, the amendment will make clear that these terrorists should not be granted any favorable immigration treatment and prohibit CIS from granting any immigration benefit or legal immigration status to detainees. This measure will close any legal loopholes that could result in a detainee from walking out of the courtroom.
As Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, Rogers has championed efforts to secure the nation’s borders while also maintaining legitimate travel and trade. Such efforts include: record funding for the border fence, doubling the size of the Border Patrol, modernizing our Nation’s ports of entry, and providing assistance to States and localities to help enforce immigration laws. Rogers has also pushed the Department towards the use of cost-effective technology, enhancement of intelligence resources, and application of risked-based solutions.