Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) blasted President Barack Obama and his administration on Thursday evening for its decision to not classify Boston bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as an enemy combatant.
Appearing on Fox News' "On The Record" with Greta Van Susteren, Bachmann was critical of the Obama administration for filing charges too quickly "against terrorist number two," the term she calls Tsarnaev. She classified him as an "Islamic jihadist," deeming the alleged actions as a decision to "declare war."
"Now we have essentially duct tape over the mouth of this terrorist and we can't use him to link together this treasure trove of information," said Bachmann, who is a lawyer. "The people hurt the most are the people watching your show and innocent Americans all across the United States. That shouldn't be. That's a miscarriage of justice."
On Monday, White House Spokesman Jay Carney affirmed that Tsarnaev, who is an American citizen, would not be treated as an enemy combatant. He added that the decision was was backed fully by Obama's national security team, as well as run through a list of suspected terrorists tried through the judicial system since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
The same day, Tsarnaev was read his Miranda rights at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston by a federal magistrate judge. By Thursday, details had emerged that Tsarnaev was questioned over a 16-hour period between Sunday and Monday before his Miranda warning was given, the Associated Press reported. Upon receiving his rights, Tsarnaev went silent.
"So you don't have any beef with the U.S. attorney," Van Susteren said. "You don't have any beef with the magistrate. Your beef really is with whoever made the decision not to make him an enemy combatant, which would relieve him of going through the criminal justice process."
"And trust me, this decision would have been made at the top level," Bachmann replied. "That's why we have to question Eric Holder and the president of the United States. Who made this decision?"