Sen. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican stormed out of a confirmation hearing after getting into a heated exchange over Guantanamo Bay detainees.
Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Democratic Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, said that the Guantanamo detainees are being held at around $12-13 million per year and argued it would be “dramatically cheaper” to transfer the inmates to a Florence, Colorado prison, per report.
After that Durbin said that the recidivism rate of a released detainee is 5%, and Graham interjected him saying “Mr. Chairman, according to the Director of National Intelligence, it’s 31%.”
Graham then continued saying: “Somebody is wrong here. If you’re gonna talk about what I said I’m going to respond to what you said. If we close Gitmo and move them to Colorado, do you support indefinite detention under war for these detainees?”
“I just want to be clear here that I’m giving the facts,” responded Durbin.
But Graham interrupted him quickly: “The answer is no. What does it matter when it goes back to? We had them and they got loose and they started killing people. If you were one of the people killed in 2005, does it matter to you when we release them?”
The “system has failed miserably” were Graham’s words while he continued to interject, saying that releasing detainees would endanger the U.S.
“As long as they’re dangerous, I hope they all die in jail if they’re gonna go back and kill Americans. It won’t bother me one bit if 39 of them die in prison. That’s a better outcome than letting them go and if it costs $500 million to keep them in jail, keep them in jail because they’re gonna go back to the fight! Look at the friggin Afghan government, it’s made up of former detainees in Gitmo. This whole thing by the left about this war ain’t working!” Graham added and got up from his seat and walked away from the hearing.