And so it begins.
Richard A. Serrano reports that early Wednesday morning, just as the magnitude of the midterm repudiation of President Obama and his radical policies was beginning to be realized, the Obama regime released a “long-held Al Qaeda suspect from Gitmo.”
That’s right. As soon as Election Day was over, amidst all the happy talk about getting along with each other, ending gridlock and getting things done, they release another suspected terrorist — the first one since the May release of the “five high-level Afghan Taliban detainees exchanged for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.”
A month ago Carol E. Lee and Jess Bravin reported that the Obama administration was drafting options that would allow Obama to close the Gitmo terrorist detention facility by overriding the congressional ban on bringing detainees to the U.S. through so-called executive action:
White House officials have concluded Mr. Obama likely has two options for closing Guantanamo ….
He could veto the annual bill setting military policy, known as the National Defense Authorization Act, in which the ban on transferring detainees to the U.S. is written. While the veto wouldn’t directly affect military funding, such a high-stakes confrontation with Congress carries significant political risks.
A second option would be for Mr. Obama to sign the bill while declaring restrictions on the transfer of Guantanamo prisoners an infringement of his powers as commander in chief, as he has done previously. Presidents of both parties have used such signing statements to clarify their understanding of legislative measures or put Congress on notice that they wouldn’t comply with provisions they consider infringements of executive power.
Remember when presidential candidate Obama rejected signing statements?
In the Wall Street Journal article, Lee and Bravin note that such a controversial move would be a “dramatic use of executive power” and would likely “provoke a sharp reaction from lawmakers, who have repeatedly barred the transfer of detainees to the U.S.”:
Unilateral action “would ignite a political firestorm, even if it’s the best resolution for the Guantanamo problem,” said American University law professor Stephen Vladeck. Republicans are sure to oppose it, while Democrats could be split, he said.
According to Lee and Bravin the Obama admin plan is to reduce remaining 149 detainees by half by “quickly transferring Guantanamo detainees cleared for release.”
To be fair, the Obama administration denied it was “drafting options” to close the facility by overriding a ban put in place by Congress that prohibits prisoners from being brought to the United States:
“Since the president came into office in 2009 the administration has been examining all possible ways we could get to closure of the facility, but we are not drafting options to override the law,” said Caitlin Hayden, a spokeswoman for the White House National Security Council.
“We are continuing to work on transfers (of prisoners) and calling on Congress to lift restrictions.”
Now that Obama no longer fears his defiance of the will of the American people and the Congress will result in further repudiation, he is back at his defiance efforts.
Obama’s defiance comes in the face of reports that released Gitmo detainees are returning to the battlefield:
As many as 20 to 30 former Guantanamo Bay detainees — some of whom were released within the last three years — are suspected by intelligence and Defense officials of having joined forces with the Islamic State and other militant groups inside Syria, Fox News has learned.
So before the end of the year, we’re going to take whatever lawful actions that I can take that I believe will improve the functioning of our immigration system that will allow us to surge additional resources to the border, where I think the vast majority of Americans have the deepest concern. And at the same time, I’ll be reaching out to both [mc_name name=’Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’M000355′ ], [mc_name name=’Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’B000589′ ], and other Republican as well as Democratic leaders to find out how it is that they want to proceed. And if they want to get a bill done — whether it’s during the lame duck or next year — I’m eager to see what they have to offer.
But what I’m not going to do is just wait.
This so-called executive action is widely expected to be even more problematic than his Gitmo closure efforts. [mc_name name=’Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’R000570′ ], House Speaker [mc_name name=’Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’B000589′ ], [mc_name name=’Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000603′ ] and soon to be majority leader [mc_name name=’Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’M000355′ ] have all warned that Obama’s threatened immigration action would poison the well.
We are already well on the way to something much worse than the post-2010 gridlock. That didn’t take long.