Desperate for a scary political issues, Republicans freak over closing Guantanamo

George Bush, Dick Cheney and Karl Rove have done enormous damage to the GOP brand — Rove and Cheney are still out there doing even more to ruin it (thanks, guys). They indoctrinated the GOP into thinking that scary terrorist images are a requisite for politics. That’s so 2002, but Republicans can’t get past it.

I found this column on the GOP’s hyperventilating over closing Guantanamo and putting the detainees in U.S. prisons by way of Kos’ midday open thread. Markos wrote “Too much common sense for a single column.” And, he’s right. The part that struck me was the paragraph on Missouri Senator Kit Bond:

Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.), in the party’s weekly radio address Saturday, raised the possibility the detainees might be coming to “a halfway house in Missouri.” To head off such threats, Republicans have introduced “The Keep Terrorists Out of America Act” — which would forbid the president from moving the inmates to any state without first getting approval from the governor and the legislature. It seems like only yesterday conservatives were intent on upholding the powers of the commander in chief against encroachment by 535 armchair generals. I’m trying to imagine the reaction if, after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, Democrats had proposed legislation requiring the president to get a state’s consent to send its National Guard troops to Iraq.

Kit Bond was a good choice to spew that message for the Republicans. As Fired Up Missouri reported, one of the terrorist masterminds, who actually had a trial and was convicted, spent time in — Missouri:

Before Roy Blunt and Kit Bond get too far ahead of themselves with the “terrorists in our midst” demagoguery, they probably need to go back and remember how outraged they were when terrorist cleric Omar Abdel-Rahman — the “Blind Sheik” — was imprisoned in Missouri. Abdel-Rahman has stayed at the U.S. Medical Center for Federal Prisoners in Springfield several times since 1995. He lives in North Carolina now, but was kept in Springfield from 2003-2007.

I sure don’t remember much outrage from Majority Leader/Majority Whip Roy Blunt and Senator Kit Bond during that time, do you?

Abdel-Rahman, you may remember, was sentenced to life in prison after his 1995 conviction for his advisory role in a plot to blow up New York City landmarks, including the United Nations. He isn’t an enemy combatant, or a suspected terrorist or some sort of potential terrorist like the detainees in Guantanamo Bay legal limbo. He is a convicted terrorist. And he happens to be imprisoned just fine with other scumbugs at a federal correctional facility.

When Abdel-Rahman was in Missouri from 2003-2007, how many scary press releases did Bond and Blunt send out telling families that the Bush Administration was jeopardizing their safety? Um…zero.

Kit Bond and Roy Blunt have no confidence in Missouri’s law enforcement personnel. But, they’ve already proven they can do the job.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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