FLASHBACK: In 2009, Hillary Clinton Trumpeted Obama Closure of Guantanamo, Ending Iraq War

'We are ending the war in Iraq ... The president did close Guantanamo'

May 20, 2015

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the House Foreign Affairs Committee in 2009 that President Obama "did close Guantanamo" and "we are ending the war in Iraq."

Her remarks were made April 22, 2009, under questioning from then-Rep. Ron Paul (R., Texas) about whether the U.S. would employ a more isolationist approach to foreign policy under the new administration. Obama had taken office only three months beforehand.

"I think that the president's actions in these nearly 100 days do match actions with words, although I admit there's a lot more to be done," Clinton said. "We are still sorting out everything we've inherited and trying to make sense of it. We want to protect America's national security, but we think there are better and more effective ways of doing that. So we are ending the war in Iraq. There is a definite end date for our troops to be there. The president did close Guantanamo. The president is looking for ways to engage with those who nobody wanted us to talk to, which is a sea shift in how we are proceeding."

Obama ordered the closing of the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention facility in 2009, but it remains open to this day. A Democratic-controlled Congress in 2010 opposed Obama's efforts to transfer Gitmo's inmates to the United States, and a unanimous Senate defense spending bill in December 2010 "barred the president from spending any funds to transfer inmates to the United States or to close the prison" according to the Washington Examiner.

Also, Clinton's words on the Iraq War are significant. Obama ordered a full troop withdrawal from Iraq at the end of 2011, and since then the country has collapsed into chaos.

He has sought to distance himself from responsibility for the decision after the rise of the Islamic State terrorist group in the country, instead claiming that it was part of the Bush administration's timeline and the responsibility of the Iraqis to make a status of forces agreement.

However, Obama constantly took credit for ending the Iraq War "as I promised" during his successful 2012 campaign.

"Words and actions both matter," Clinton told Paul. "At the end of the day, actions count more, but you have to begin by at least articulating a new approach."