Duncan Files Legislation to Prohibit the Transfer or Release of Guantanamo Bay Detainees

February 23, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Jeff Duncan (SC-03) filed legislation to prohibit the transfer or release of terrorists detained at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to locations within the United States:

“Naval Station Guantanamo Bay has long housed the most dangerous enemy combatants captured by our United States Military. It is commonsense policy that we keep these terrorists far away from American citizens and out of our judicial system. Unfortunately, President Biden has signaled his intent to close the Guantanamo Bay facility, which could lead to the transfer or release of the dangerous GITMO prisoners to the United States. I’ve been leading the charge on this issue in Congress since 2015. When then Vice President Biden was running point on closing GITMO, the Obama/Biden Administration noted the potential for the prisoners to be transferred to the Charleston Brig in South Carolina. This misguided, dangerous policy move could put my fellow South Carolinians and our entire nation at serious risk. Simply put, no state should become a dumping ground for terrorists. My bill, H.R. 1048, acts as a safeguard to prevent the Biden Administration, and any future administration, from transferring or releasing Guantanamo Bay detainees to domestic soil. I urge House Leadership to bring this critical legislation to the floor for a vote as soon as possible,” said Congressman Duncan.

Congresswoman Nancy Mace, representing South Carolina’s First Congressional District, is the first Member to cosponsor Congressman Duncan’s legislation. This is what she had to say about the issue:

“Moving some of the most dangerous terrorists in the world to U.S. soil is unacceptable and irresponsible. Regrettably, the Biden White House has announced its plan to move forward with closing the prison at Guantanamo. Any plan to transfer these prisoners to the U.S., such as the Obama-era proposal to transfer the prisoners to the Charleston Brig, is unacceptable. These terrorists are the worst of the worst and should not be held on American soil,” said Congresswoman Mace.

Background: Congressman Duncan’s bill, H.R. 1048, ensures that no funding amounts authorized to be appropriated or otherwise made available for the Department of Defense for any fiscal year may be used to transfer, release, or assist in the transfer or release of individuals detained at Guantanamo Bay to or within the United States, its territories, or possessions. Read the bill HERE.

Additional Press Releases from Rep. Duncan on the issue –

  • 2020 Duncan NDAA Amendment on Guantanamo Bay HERE.
  • 2019 Duncan Responds to House Passage of NDAA HERE.
  • 2018 Duncan Reacts to State of the Union Address to Congress HERE.
  • 2016 Rep. Jeff Duncan comments on passage of FY17 NDAA HERE.
  • 2016 Rep. Duncan Comments on Largest Gitmo Transfer of Obama Tenure HERE.
  • 2016 Rep. Jeff Duncan introduces resolution authorizing Gitmo Lawsuit HERE.
  • 2015 Congressman Jeff Duncan: President Obama Plays Politics with US National Security HERE.

News articles on the issue -

  • 2016 “Charleston Naval Brig to be reviewed as possible terrorist holding site” The Post and Courier HERE.
  • 2016 “Residents near Naval Brig don't want Gitmo prisoners in their backyard” Live5News WCSC HERE.
  • 2016 “Lowcountry residents concerned about Obama's Guantanamo Bay closure plan” ABC News 4 HERE.