Washington (CNN) -- The White House is considering moving the site of the September 11 attack trial from Manhattan if the U.S. Justice Department sees fit, senior administration officials confirmed Friday.
"Conversations have occurred within the administration to discuss contingency options should the possibility of a trial in Lower Manhattan be foreclosed upon by Congress or locally," a senior administration official said.Wisdom: a commondity that's in desperately short supply at the Obama White House (where there are plenty of "smart" people but not many--or, indeed, any--wise ones).
The turnabout comes after New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other politicians expressed great concern over the costs and disruption of holding the September 11 trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four accomplices at a courthouse near ground zero in Lower Manhattan.
White House officials said President Obama agrees with Attorney General Eric Holder's decision in November to try Mohammed in a civilian criminal court in the United States, not a military tribunal.
"Currently our federal jails hold hundreds of convicted terrorists, and the president's opinion has not changed on that," White House spokesman Bill Burton said Thursday.
White House officials said the decision about any possible alternate sites to try Mohammed and the others will come from the Justice Department.
As city officials and residents contemplated the staging of the trial in Manhattan, doubts emerged about the wisdom of the location...