Sunday, November 28, 2010

Graham says he has the votes to keep KSM terror trial at Guantanamo Bay

By Bridget Johnson
Borrowed from The Hill
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Sunday that he believes he has the votes to keep professed 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed from being tried in a U.S. civilian court.

The senator said on "Fox News Sunday" he believed in an "all of the above" approach to trying terror suspects that could utilize civilian courts and military commissions, but said he would do "everything in my power" to keep Mohammed and 9/11 co-conspirators from being tried in a civilian court.

"It is a disaster waiting to happen," Graham said. "I believe I have the votes to block it."

The administration's plans for trying future terror suspects is in limbo since Ahmed Ghailani, a Guantanamo detainee charged in the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, was acquitted on 284 counts and convicted on one charge of conspiracy to commit terrorist acts.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton stressed last weekend that there will be a recommendation coming from Attorney General Eric Holder on trying Mohammed.

Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) said on the same program that "each case needs to be dictated by the facts" and the "very highest" operatives behind the 9/11 attacks should be tried in military courts, but stressed it should be on a "case-by-case basis."

"He was ready to plead guilty before the Obama administration stopped the trial," Graham said of Mohammed sending a note to the military judge in his case back in 2008, expressing his desire to plead guilty.

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