Holder Blames Congress, Didn't Have Change of Heart in 9/11 Trials, Just a Reality Check

Elisabeth Meinecke
Posted: Apr 04, 2011 2:20 PM
Attorney General Eric Holder said he "seriously explored" having 9/11 conspirators tried in the U.S. and he's confident the justice system could have performed with "same distinction" that has been its hallmark. He asserted he still believes a federal court would be the best place to try those accused.

Holder then blamed Congress for blocking funds to bring any Gitmo detainees coming to the United States, saying elected members didn't have access to evidence, etc. to make prosecution decisions. (Of course, there's also safety decisions involved in bringing and housing terrorists to U.S. soil, but Holder didn't imply he'd taken those into consideration.)

Since the congressional restrictions probably won't be lifted soon, Holder said, the DOJ has, in the interest of getting these cases to trial, recommended they be tried in a military tribunal.

He also threw in the rhetorical "Let me be clear...let me be very clear" clause. At least the administration's on the same page with their speech writing, even though they're not on Libyan involvment.