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‘Up To 90 People’ In Executive Branch Knew Of Swap

From Reuters:

White House-Congress rift over Bergdahl deal deepens

By Patricia Zengerle | June 9, 2014

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A political storm over the trade of five Taliban inmates for a captured American soldier intensified on Monday when Obama administration officials told U.S. lawmakers that up to 90 people within the administration – but no members of Congress – were told in advance about the swap.

"It strikes me as unfortunate that they could have 80 to 90 people in the administration aware of what was happening and not be able to trust a single Republican or Democrat in the House or the Senate," Representative Greg Walden of Oregon, a member of the House of Representatives Republican leadership, told reporters after leaving a briefing on the exchange.

Once again, we seem to be the only people who remember that Obama tried this exact same swap in March of 2012 only to have to leaked to the press by Dianne Feinstein. And the outrage from the conservative media caused Obama to call it off.

Which is why Congress was not briefed this time around. Obama didn’t want it to fall through.

The White House has been trying to appease angry lawmakers since President Barack Obama announced on May 31 that Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl had been exchanged for the five inmates from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

It doesn’t sound like they were trying to appease them. It sounds like they were poking them in the eye. By the way, not all of the lawmakers were unhappy about being bypassed. According to the Weekly Standard: "Louise Slaughter, a New York Democrat, said she didn’t blame the administration for not notifying Congress. "I wouldn’t tell a secret to 435 people," she said."

But lest we forget, Bergdahl’s parents knew, the Haqqani Network knew, the Taliban knew and the Qataris all knew. So the only people this secret was being kept from was Congress and the news media and the American people.

House Republicans said they planned an investigation of the exchange deal.

Lawmakers and human rights activists said they expected the furor would make it more difficult to win Congress’ backing for Obama’s avowed intention to close the detention camp, long criticized by human rights groups and others.

Gosh that would be terrible. That might undercut Obama’s bid to be the next Lincoln. For while President Lincoln is remembered for freeing the slaves, apparently Mr. Obama wants to be remembered for freeing the terrorists.

"Congress does not like to be left out of the loop," Texas Representative Gene Green, a Democrat, told Reuters. If the White House had called at least the leaders of national security committees, "that would have been much better and maybe we would not have had this controversy," he said.

Lest we forget, Obama didn’t have any problem briefing the leaders of the national security committees, including Dianne Feinstein and Saxby Chambliss, in advance of the mission to kill Osama Bin Laden. Which was certainly are far more sensitive secret than this one.

In fact, Dianne Feinstein was the first person to announce Bin Laden’s death. (See the article below.)

Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas said in a Senate speech on Monday he would introduce a bill this week that would bar any federal funding for Guantanamo transfers for six months.

Congressional aides told Reuters that similar legislation is expected to be introduced as soon as this week in the Republican-led House, where opposition to closing the Guantanamo prison is far stronger than in the Democratic-controlled Senate.

And, thanks to Harry Reid, (who claims he was consulted about the swap, though there is no evidence that he was), this legislation will go nowhere.

Members of Congress were not informed about the prisoner swap deal despite U.S. law requiring that the House and Senate be given 30 days’ notice before any prisoners are transferred from Guantanamo…

And never mind that Obama actually claimed back on June 3rd that he had consulted Congress.

As promised, from the archives of the California business website, Fox & Hounds:

Feinstein Announces Bin Laden’s Death

By Joel Fox | Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Speaking to an audience gathered in Santa Monica last night to commemorate the life of late political consultant Kam Kuwata, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein concluded her praise for her long time friend with a surprise announcement.

She said she had to keep a lot of secrets as the chairwoman of the Intelligence Committee, but she added, she was going to share one secret. At 7:30 pm tonight, she went on, the president is going to come on television to announce Osama Bin Laden had been killed.

There were gasps from the audience, and after another sentence or two from the senator, applause…

But, once again, we know exactly why Obama didn’t brief Congress. Someone might have leaked the swap to the press and it would have had to be called off again. And Obama couldn’t allow that.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, June 10th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “‘Up To 90 People’ In Executive Branch Knew Of Swap”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    “Shut up,” they explained

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