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President Obama introduced a plan this morning to close Guantanamo Bay, arguing that it is a waste of money and continues to be used as a propaganda tool by terrorists. 

He said that terrorists can be tried in U.S. courts and held at maximum-security facilities, though he did not specify a location. 

(See more on the announcement, here.)

The backlash from Republicans has been forceful and swift. Here's some of the responses so far...

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio: "We're not giving back an important naval base to an anti-American communist dictatorship."

Watch below:

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz at a campaign event:

Mr President, don't shut down Gitmo. Expand it and let's have some new terrorists there.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (Wisconsin): 

After seven years, President Obama has yet to convince the American people that moving Guantanamo terrorists to our homeland is smart or safe. And he doesn’t seem interested in continuing to try. His proposal fails to provide taxpayers with critical details required by law, including the exact cost and location of an alternate detention facility. Congress has left no room for confusion. It is against the law—and it will stay against the law—to transfer terrorist detainees to American soil. We will not jeopardize our national security over a campaign promise.

House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Jason Chaffetz (Utah): 

The president’s proposal to transfer prisoners out of Guantanamo Bay is a mistake. Transferring detainees to the U.S. is against the law and will remain against the law. Having visited the prison myself, I believe Guantanamo is the best location to hold those who pose a grave threat to our nation. The president’s alternative is dangerous and makes our country less safe. With this plan, President Obama is prioritizing politics over security.

Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner: 

Regardless of today’s futile proposal, transferring detainees to the U.S. is illegal, and it’s rejected by Coloradans, top Colorado law enforcement officials, and Americans across the country. Today’s proposal only signals that the President may be willing to once again circumvent Congress and ignore the very law he approved in order to fulfill his campaign promises. This represents a grave threat to Colorado and our national security and I will take any and all action as a United States Senator to ensure Guantanamo Bay detainees remain in Cuba and out of Colorado.

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott:

Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts:

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus:

Moving the most radical Islamic terrorists to the U.S. is a dangerous course of action that is illegal without congressional authorization. There’s a reason why communities in states like Kansas, Colorado, and South Carolina oppose bringing the world’s most dangerous terrorists into their backyards and previous attempts have been met with overwhelming bipartisan opposition.

Despite growing fear among Americans about radical Islamic terror, President Obama’s last-ditch attempt to fulfill a campaign promise puts politics above keeping America safe. Hillary Clinton, a leading advocate of this approach, needs to explain to residents in South Carolina and residents near other potential sites how placing hardened Jihadists in their communities will make them safer.

Programming Alert: Bret Baier will have exclusive reaction from House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX), tonight at 6:00 ET on "Special Report."


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