Senator Ben Nelson signed on to legislation that would prohibit terror suspects currently being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba is transferred to the U.S. for civilian trial.
“Today I signed on to bi-partisan legislation prohibiting funding for civilian trials for those charged with the attack on 9/11. I believe that given the severe costs and security risks of holding these trials in civilian court, the best course of action would be to use military commissions.”
Senator Nelson says this would be an expensive process that taxpayers should not have to fund.
“Last month, New York City Mayor Bloomberg sent a letter to the president on how significant the cost of the trials will be. I think initially he had welcomed the process but now that he estimated the cost of detaining and trying the men would be about 216-million dollars the first year and an additional 200-million each subsequent year and since then those estimates have skyrocketed to a billion dollars.”
Senator Nelson says there is more to consider as well.
“We need to find a solution for the prosecution and the detention of those at Guantanamo that does not expose us to overwhelming financial burdens of a billion dollars and heightened security risk for all Americans.”
Senator Nelson also reminds us of the opinion of security officials that another major attack is likely.
“They thought an attack would be attempted within the next six months and they said they were 100-percent certain of that so what I think what we have to do is take security interests in the process as well as jurisdictional.”