Washington, D.C.— Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) today released the following statement reacting to Defense Secretary Carter’s response to his November inquiry about the transfer of Shaker Aamer from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay:
“Secretary Carter’s response to my inquiry about Shaker Aamer is disappointing, but unsurprising given that President Obama is our commander-in-chief. Aamer is a dangerous man who seeks to harm the United States. That he was transferred with anything less than full agreement of our government and our military is completely unacceptable and speaks volumes about President Obama’s commitment to political talking points over our national security. What else will the Obama administration ‘overrule’ as they seek to close Guantanamo Bay and what impact will it have on our safety and security?”
Background: On November 20, 2015 Senator Tom Cotton, along with Senators Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), and Susan Collins (R-Maine) sent letters to the Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), General Joseph F. Dunford, Jr., expressing concern over the Obama Administration’s recent release of Shaker Aamer from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay. In his response, Secretary Carter confirmed that he overruled the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s opposition to the transfer of Shaker Aamer. Secretary Carter’s response can be found here.