Senator Ayotte Says Tsarnaev Should Have Been Declared Enemy Combatant

Apr 22, 2013

The White House says Dzohkhar Tsarnaev, the surviving marathon bombing suspect, will not be tried as an enemy combatant. That comes after New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte weighed in saying that not declaring him an enemy combatant might be a national security mistake.

Senator Ayotte joined fellow Republican Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Saxby Chambliss in calling for the Obama administration to declare Dzohkhar Tsarnaev an enemy combatant.

“So the key has to be, right now, to make sure we gather the maximum amount of information from this individual to protect our country because this goes well beyond a common crime with the nature of the terrorist events that occurred in Boston.”

Ayotte says enemy combatant status would’ve prolonged Tsarnaev’s detention as long as investigators needed to gather intelligence that may be crucial for national security. It would’ve also allowed interrogators to question him without a lawyer and without certain criminal justice protections.