Dealing a blow to an Obama administration already forced to change course in its plans to prosecute 9/11 terror suspects, a bipartisan group of Senators on Tuesday vowed to ban any government funds from being used for any trial in civilian court.
The legislative strike comes just days after news reports revealed that President Barack Obama has decided not to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-proclaimed 9/11 mastermind, and four other conspirators in civilian courts in New York City.
“Simply moving the 9/11 trials from New York City is not a solution,— said Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), ranking member of the Judiciary Committee. “As long as these trials are in civilian court, they will bring severe costs and dangers with them wherever they go. There is only one venue change — and one policy — that will work: military commissions.—
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), an outspoken critic of using federal courts to try terrorist suspects, is the lead sponsor of the bill that is also supported by Sens. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), Joe Lieberman (ID-Conn.), Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.).