Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, the top-ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said Monday that the Obama administration's decision to release five Taliban prisoners in exchange for an American prisoner of war was a "dangerous precedent" that "puts all Americans at risk throughout the world."
The Baltimore County Democrat joins a chorus of Republicans who have questioned the effort that led to the release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the last remaining prisoner in Afghanistan. Obama announced his release on Saturday.
"Since World War Two we have not negotiated with terrorists or other groups," Ruppersberger said. "What concerns me is the future. This puts all Americans at risk throughout the world, including our men and women on the front line...for kidnapping."
Ruppersberger is part of a group of eight senior lawmakers focused on intelligence and military matters that would ordinarily receive a briefing before such a decision is carried out. Ruppersberger said he expected that briefing to take place this afternoon.
"I'm willing to at least hear the administration's point of view and justification," he said, "but I'm worried about the long term affect."