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Dianne Feinstein: White House sorry for ‘oversight’ in Bergdahl deal

- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein said Tuesday that the White House told her that it was on "oversight" that Congress didn't receive the required notification about the prisoner exchange deal that secured the release of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.

Mrs. Feinstein, California Democrat, said the excuse came from Tony Blinken, President Obama's deputy national security adviser.

"Tony Blinken called last night and said that it was an oversight or something to that effect. So I accept that," she told reporters at the Capitol.

The president is required to give Congress 30 days notice before transferring prisoners from the detention center for terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. No notice was provided before the administration sent five high-ranking Taliban officials to Qatar in exchange for the release of Sgt. Bergdahl.

While she accepted the White House excuse, Mrs. Feinstein said that there are "legitimate concerns" about the way the deal was handled by the Obama administration.

"I just think these are important things," she said of the notification issue. "I think it is important, if you can, to have a team — legislative [and] executive — that is supportive of something that is unusual, and this is unusual."

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