by Charlie Spiering 3 Jun 2014, 11:12 AM PDT
A top aide to President Obama is now apologizing to Congress for not informing lawmakers, as required by law, that the White House was planning to trade an alleged deserter for five top Taliban commanders.
The apology comes after Obama himself defended his actions this morning, insisting his administration had discussed the release with Congress “for some time.”
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) told reporters that she received a call from Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken on Monday evening apologizing for failing to inform Congress about the deal to exchange five Taliban detainees for the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.
“I had a call from the White House last night, from Tony Blinken, apologizing for it,” Feinstein, the chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, told reporters at the Senate on Tuesday.
Feinstein said that it was “very disappointing” that President Obama decided not to alert Congress about the deal, suggesting that there was not a “level of trust” at the White House.
"He apologized for it and said it was an oversight," Feinstein said about the call with Blinken, clarifying that it was her “impression” of the call.
Feinstein said that in previous conversations with Senators about the trade, “there were very strong views and they were virtually unanimous against trade.”
“The White House is pretty unilateral about what they want to do when they want to do it,” she added, pointing out that the White House failed to work together with Congress in the situation.
Feinstein explained that she still had questions about Bergdahl, particular about the nature of his captivity.
“I certainly want to know more about whether this man is a deserter or not, I think that’s important to at least know, soldiers died looking for him, that’s important to give them credit,” she added.