Obama Votes Present, Yet Again

Remember as kids how it was fun to make another youngster say uncle, or in other words have them give up. Well, the White House is just about yelling uncle over the holding of a trial for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, a.k.a. KSM. There are basically 3 options now available to the Obama administration on what to do about KSM’s trial.

1) Holding the trial in New York City (or somewhere in the US) in Civil Court as AG Holder announced they would. There is almost total bipartisan opposition to bringing KSM to the US. It’s been over a year since Holder made his announcement and they are further now from bringing KSM to the US than they were then.

Mayor Bloomberg, Chief Kelly, and even Senator Schumer as well as Gov-elect Andrew Cuomo have all voiced public and private opposition to bringing KSM to New York.

2) Trying KSM in Guantanamo before a military tribunal. Considering Guantanamo was closed this past January, oh wait , that didn’t happen. No way this President would have the trial there because it would mean he would have to admit his policy was wrong–something we’ve learned he doesn’t do. And as that process was already begun by Bush at Gitmo–no way Obama will “go back” to that. And the left will have a conniption fit if Obama holds the trial in ‘closed’, Guantanamo.

3)Doing nothing. If he approves this policy of doing nothing, i.e. voting present, he will be going back on his word from his campaign and furthermore keeping a policy he said “would have destroyed our credibility when it comes to rule of law all around the world, and given a huge boost to terrorist recruitment in countries that say, Look, this is how the United States treats Muslims”.

Campaigning ain’t governing.

My guess is Obama will choose Option #3. It fits his style of management. The ineptness of this administation continues regardless of whichever option is chosen.


  1. I’d like to see the president ignore the bi-partisan opposition and pay closer attention to the rule of law. Screw the politics. As Glen Greenwald states: “the mandates of the Constitution and the rule of law aren’t supposed to be waived for political expediency. ” If the trial is not held in civilian court the terrorists have won. They have achieved their objective of reducing us to a bunch of sniveling cowards.

    So much for American exceptionalism.

    Man-up, Obama!

  2. Randy in Richmond says:

    Well, you can eliminate option # 1. Yesterday, in civilian court, Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani was acquitted of all but one charge in the bombing
    of U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania that killed 224 people, including 12 Americans. To put this in perspective he was cleared of over 280 charges–including murder and conspiracy to commit murder.

    Rep. Pete King (R-L.I.), who has been a staunch opponent of such trials, called the mixed verdict ” a disgraceful miscarriage of justice.”

    This “test run” trial in civilian court is an utter failure for the Obama administration and especially Attorney General Eric Holder. If the President does not fire Holder immediately he will be exhibiting his total disregard for actually bringing to justice those being held for terrorism against the US and others. Holder also promised in public that he would convict KSM and when asked what would happen to KSM if he wasn’t found guilty Holder responded “failure is not an option”. Prosecuting 101 tells us this is a violation of the principle of due process as well as a just plain stupid thing to say. Follow this answer Holder made to Jim Lehrer on his News Hour when asked who he consulted with in making the decision to try combatants ( excuse me, man caused disaster suspects) in civil court:

    Lehrer: Did you talk to anybody outside the government?
    Holder: I talked to my wife —
    Lehrer: Yes? Okay.
    Holder: — about what she thought. And I actually talked to my brother, who’s a Port Authority police officer who served —
    Lehrer: Oh, is that right? Yes.
    Holder: — in New York, New Jersey, and who lost friends and colleagues on 9/11 in the towers. And I talked to them about what — was it appropriate to bring it in New York, the symbolic significance of it, the possibility of getting a good and fair, detached jury.”


    Yesterday’s result should make Holder toast. It’s not if, but when he’ll go. Another example of the total ineptness of this President and his administration. This decision further guarantees that Gitmo will not be closed anytime soon. And if Obama does not fire Holder I suspect Hillary will move that much closer to making a run in 2012.

    And who helped shape yesterday’s outcome–Holder’s wife and his brother.



  3. There’s a hint of irony in the fact that you chose to quote Peter King. But that’s neither here nor there.

    Randy, do you have reason to believe the outcome would have been different had the trial taken place in a military tribunal?

  4. Randy in Richmond says:

    Dan R
    Yes. 100% absolutely. The main reason is the federal judge barred a witness that the prosecution wanted to use that would have provided info very damning to the defendant. He would not have been barred in a military tribunal trial.