JONES: Oh, I don't believe that.
STEPHANOPOULOS: That's clear enough. Let me ask you more about Guantanamo, then. Because the Congress has sent several more strong messages to the administration about Guantanamo this week. The chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, David Obey, did not include the money for closing Guantanamo in his war spending bill and Republican leaders in the Congress have mounted a campaign against bringing any of the detainees from Guantanamo into the United States. Here's Senator Kit Bond.
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SEN. CHRISTOPHER S. BOND, R-MO.: Whether these terrorists are coming to prison in Kansas or a halfway house in Missouri or any other state, I can tell you this. Americans don't want these terrorists in their neighborhoods.
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STEPHANOPOULOS: In fact, the Republican leadership has introduced legislation called the Keep Terrorists Out of America Act which would require approval from both the governor and the state legislature of a state before any detainees can be brought in. What does the administration think of that legislation?
JONES: Well, the first think I would say about that is there has been no decision taken. This is an issue that we are - the president is studying but absent the final determination this is all speculation.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But you have determined - you don't know exactly how but because we're asking other countries to take detainees, that we're probably going to have to take some as well. Secretary Gates said that to the Congress this week.
JONES: We're going to have to figure that out and those discussions are currently under way so it would be premature to comment on what the president might or might not do at this particular point.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But how about the legislation? They are saying before anyone comes back, a governor and a state legislature must approve. Do you have any problems with that?
JONES: Well, we'll take that under advisement. These are near term subject that are currently being discussed and that is going to have to be one of the decision points and one of the discussions that we'll have on this issue but it hasn't been determined yet.
STEPHANOPOULOS: This - I'm just a little confused on that because Secretary Gates did say a couple of things when he testified this week. He did say that some would have to be brought into the United States. He said there's this problem of 50 to 100 detainees who can't be tried and can't be released and we're going to have to find a way. In fact, the Pentagon is looking into building a prison.
You're saying now you've already made the threshold decision that some detainees are going to have to come to the United States.
JONES: Well, if you're going to ask other to take some, you're going to have to figure out how you're going to have to do that and that's where we are right now. No decision has been taken as to exactly how to do that.
STEPHANOPOULOS: Because this has become so thorny - the president wants to close Guantanamo by the January deadline. Are you open to extending that deadline? This has turned out to be quite a difficult decision to implement.
JONES: Well, the - again, the very discussions on these issues and how to do this are currently on the table at the White House. We are coming up on the 20 May deadline for a decision so there will be some announcements made in the near future but no decision has been taken yet.