March 14th, 2010
08:20 AM ET
10 years ago

Boehner: I wouldn't vote to close Gitmo 'if you put a gun to my head'

Washington (CNN) – The top Republican in the House is not mincing words when it comes to voicing his opposition to closing the U.S. military detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and relocating the terrorism suspects held there onto American soil.

Asked about the facility and whether it would be closed, House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said in an interview that airs on Sunday’s State of the Union, “Well, no they're not. They - they keep saying they are.”

Boehner rejected the White House proposal saying, “(T)hey want $500 million from this Congress to rehabilitate this prison in northwest Illinois. I want to see who the members are who are going to vote for this. I wouldn't vote for this if you put a gun to my head.”

In the sit-down interview with Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley, Boehner called Guantanamo “a world class facility” and said it was a proper site for conducting the military trials of suspected terrorists, an option preferred by Boehner and many of his Republican colleagues on Capitol Hill.

“I think it's the appropriate - appropriate place to hold these prisoners. And they can do the - the tribunals right there at Guantanamo. There is no reason to bring these terrorists into the United States. No reason to increase the threat level here - because they're here, their friends may want to come. It makes no sense to me. And I don't think the Congress will appropriate one dime to move those prisoners from Guantanamo to the United States.”

The White House is reconsidering a previously announced plan by Attorney General Eric Holder to hold several high-profile terrorism trials in civilian court in New York City. The Obama administration has also failed to meet its own, self-imposed one-year deadline for closing the Guantanamo Bay facility and moving the detainees held there to another ultra high-security prison perhaps in the Midwestern United States.


Follow Martina Stewart on Twitter: @MMStewartCNN

soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. Republicans are Repugnant Taliban

    The 'Orange Boner' would not vote yes on anything that would move this country forward, all he knows how to say is NO NO NO NO because he belongs to the Repugliban Party of NO Answers, No solutions, No moving forward and deeply afraid of the African American in office to the point of obsession.

    March 14, 2010 08:23 am at 8:23 am |
  2. Republicans are Repugnant Taliban

    The 'Orange Boner' would not vote yes on anything that would move this country forward, all he knows how to say is NO NO NO NO because he belongs to the Repugliban Party of NO Answers, No solutions, No moving forward and deeply afraid of the African American in office to the point of obsession

    March 14, 2010 08:24 am at 8:24 am |
  3. Anonymous

    What if we were to waterboard you instead? Give us the chance to do so. It's not like it's torture or anything.

    March 14, 2010 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  4. Republicans are Repugnant Taliban

    I would give anything to see that, the 'Orange Boner' being waterboarded and forced to tell us what a complete and total idiot he is, it would be worth prime time TV for sure.

    March 14, 2010 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  5. Al

    The one thing this guy ALWAYS VOTES YES FOR, every time these bums vote to give them-selves a raise. The GOP is not the party of NO when it is pay time.

    March 14, 2010 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  6. Republicans are Repugnant Taliban

    @Al you got that dead on, raises for themselves and money for Wall Street, th eonly things Repugliban ever vote YES for.

    March 14, 2010 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  7. double standard

    Open mouth and insert foot Boner !! You still live in the 1950's.Don't change a thing just the same old crap from you.LOSER !!

    March 14, 2010 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  8. JonDie

    And when has John Boehner ever SERVED his county in a capacity that required him to face the possiblity of physical violence? I'd say, Never.

    March 14, 2010 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  9. GI Joe

    The gun to the head sounds pretty good.

    March 14, 2010 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  10. Marcus

    GITMO's techniques of 'interrogation' were always seen in Hollywood movies and other media as why the Nazis, Commies and other villains were the bad guys.

    March 14, 2010 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  11. CHIPS

    Your NO vote as all American know is like the every ready battery! It keeps going and going and going.

    March 14, 2010 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  12. Willy Brown

    Kepp it open. We need a place for all those democrats in Congress to be housed.

    March 14, 2010 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  13. liz

    Proof from his own mouth that he's a rigid ideologue who can't possibly see any other side of an issue but his. so what if someone put a gun to his head, there's nothing in there a bullet could hurt. 😉

    March 14, 2010 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  14. ran

    The gift to the Democrats that keeps on given: Boehner.

    Unfortunately after 11/2010 election he will be gone.

    March 14, 2010 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  15. Mike

    NO needs to be said to more spending by the demorats and nobamby. I cannot wait until November when the demorats will be sent home and again in 2012.

    March 14, 2010 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  16. jane

    Well, no one is proposing putting a gun to your head, sir, despite your distain for whatever legilation benefits the country. But hey... if I were you, I'd refrain from putting ideas in peoples' heads.

    March 14, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  17. Marie MD

    This one is almost too easy. Gun to his head. Sorry, too easy.

    March 14, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  18. Hawk in Texas

    So what else is new. he has voted no for every thing else why change now. the man is a total idiot.

    March 14, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  19. g

    I understand the image issues associated with Gitmo and I say fix Gitmo's image don't close it. I don't want these crazy terrorist bastards on US soil. I don't want them jailed, tried or executed on US soil, I want all of that done at Gitmo....There is nothing that you can do in Illionos that you can't do in Gitmo!

    And please, please, please if you figure out where Osama bin Bastard don't bring him back alive, take him "out" in the field. We don't need the headache!

    March 14, 2010 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  20. a health economist

    And I wouldn't say Republicans know what they are talking about in terms of the health care debate if you put a gun to my head. We're even.

    March 14, 2010 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  21. Just Jake

    Its a shame, we have so many people that are mean and evil.

    I pray this day that all those folks that are trying to stop progress that God takes control. If it is a NO or Yes, God takes control. I'm sick of Man trying to run his world

    March 14, 2010 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  22. proud mother and sister of a soldier

    Thank you Mr Boehner. Knowing first hand what these terrorist have done to my son makes waterboarding a piece of cake! Knowing the young men whose graves I visit, I wonder why they would fight for the ungrateful and selfish people of this country. Keep them off of american soil and keep them under military control. They are enemy combatants and unless you have seen them first hand, keep your mouths shut! Only cowards hide behind the dems words.

    March 14, 2010 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  23. Fed Up

    Voters need to ask themselves if they breally want someone like John Boehner to be Speaker of the House?

    He makes Denny Hastert look competent and Nancy Pelosi absolutely lovable.

    March 14, 2010 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  24. Fed Up

    I think Gitmo should be closed only if they put all the prisoners into Obama's neighborhood in Illinois.

    March 14, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  25. Indy

    You could also put a gun to any Republicans head and ask them to vote yes to anything that would help middle class and they would say NO. They will do anything to see the country fail on the Dem's watch and if that means continue to destroy their country they will do it as long as the black President is stopped at every step. Aside from all of that it is one of the stupidest things ever said, using the term of putting a gun to your head for a vote is a uneducated,fear mongering statement that Republicans love to spew.He could have just said there is no way he would vote to close GITMO, but as usual Republicans have to bring on overreaction and their "pee your pants fear" to the country.

    March 14, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
1 2 3