Democrats are seizing on comments by a GOP lawmaker who implied that the Obama administration's decision to prosecute the Sept. 11 terror suspects in New York may have been motivated by a desire to create jobs.
"You've got subways, tunnels, bridges all subject to terrorism and unless they're trying to create a new jobs bill by allowing terrorism back in New York, then this is insane and even that would be insane," Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, told Fox News on Tuesday.
Rep. Chris Van Hollen, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, assailed Gohmert's comments.
"Congressman Louis Gohmert's outrageous comments not only insult the victims of 9/11 and their families but also offer the latest evidence that the Republican Party has been taken over by right-wing extremists," Van Hollen said in a written statement. "House Republicans should immediately condemn Congressman Gohmert's offensive remarks."
Attorney General Eric Holder's announcement last week that he would bring self-proclaimed mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his four alleged accomplices to New York for a federal trial set off another round of intense political debate over President Obama's national security policies.
Conservatives argue the attack was an act of war and say the suspects should be tried in a military tribunal rather than a federal court, where they will have more legal protections and a potential platform to spread their propaganda. But most Democrats say they support returning the suspects to the scene of the crime to face justice.