Mitt Romney on Guantanamo Bay

Last Updated : Jun 21, 2011

Summary

Governor Romney is a strong supporter of the use of the Guantanamo Bay facility to hold prisoners, the use of enhanced interrogation techniques, and the denial of habeas corpus and other legal rights to prisoners. He does not support civilian trials for prisoners such as KSM.

During the Presidential debate in South Carolina, Governor Romney stated that he wanted prisoners held in Guantanamo, and that doubling the size of the facility could be justified if the need existed. When asked about whether or not the CIA should torture a prisoner in a "ticking time bomb" scenario, Governor Romney noted that it was the President and not the CIA that would make this decision and that he supported enhanced interrogation but not torture.

In another presidential debate, Governor Romney stated that he would not specify openly if techniques such as waterboarding were torture. He stated again that Guantanamo Bay was the appropriate place for detainees and not in a civilian jail with lawyers. This support for the use of Guantanamo was continued in campaign stops in which he stated that the facility at GITMO was the appropriate and legal place for detainees such as KSM. When President Obama finally recanted his push to hold civilian trials for KSM, Governor Romney stated that President Obama was naive for attempting to hold such a trial in a civilian court.

 

South Carolina Debate

In May of 2007, Governor Romney participated in the first South Carolina Presidential debate. When asked about Guantanamo Bay, expressed support for holding detainees there, and support for not allowing habeas corpus rights.

 

CNN Debate

In November of 2007, Governor Romney participated in the CNN debate in Florida. He was asked whether or not waterboarding was torture. He stated that the US should not torture, but refused to state what constituted torture.

 

Arrogant, Bunker Mentality

On December 15, 2007 Governor Romney spoke at a town hall in Iowa about prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, the capture of Khalid Sheik Mohammad.

 

Reaction to KSM Trial

On April 4, 2011 Governor Romney issued a short statement in response to the Obama administration's decision to hold a military tribunal for Khalid Sheik Mohammad instead of a civilian trial. He called President Obama inexperienced and naive.

References

[1] Website: Politico Article: Mitt Romney: Gitmo flip-flop shows na´ve president Author: KASIE HUNT Accessed on: 06/20/2011

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