Carl Levin (Senator Levin–congrats for casting your 11,000th vote yesterday!) has come up with a sound suggestion to help close Gitmo: send them to MI.

Most lawmakers view the prospect of moving prisoners from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to their districts as a negative proposition. But at least one Democratic senator is open to the idea as a potential economic boost to his struggling state.

Carl Levin , chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said that construction and staffing at a new maximum-security prison in Michigan could help his cash-starved state.

“If the governor and the local officials are open to it, that’s something that should be considered,” said Levin, making the point that each state should make its own determination.

Former Michigan Gov. John Engler, a Republican, suggested this month that creating a “Guantánamo North” in the Upper Peninsula could net the state upward of $1 billion per year, according to reports.

While I’m not a fan of turning prisons into profit centers, I’m with these men. If you need to, build a maximum security prison in MI, in the U-P if you want. We need the jobs, and if it’d help to close Gitmo, I’m all for it.



Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel is an American journalist whose reporting specializes in security and civil liberties.