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Obama Defends Deal for Bergdahl's Release
Washington (ABC) -- For the first time since his Saturday speech in the Rose Garden, President Obama defended his administration's decision to secure the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, despite questions about his capture in Afghanistan.
"Regardless of the circumstances, whatever those circumstances may turn out to be, we still get an American soldier back if he's held in captivity. True. Full stop," Obama said at a news conference at the Belweder Palace here this morning. "We don't condition that. That's what every mom and dad who sees a son or daughter sent over into war theater should expect from not just their commander in chief but the United States of America.
"The United States has always had a pretty sacred rule. And that is we don't leave our men or women in uniform behind, and that dates back to the earliest days of our revolution," he said.
The president said the administration had consulted Congress in the past about the possibility of a prisoner exchange in order for the Taliban to release Bergdahl.
The administration has come under fire by lawmakers for not consulting Congress prior to the swap.
Bergdahl was captured by the Taliban June 30, 2009, after, sources say, he walked away from his remote base, leaving his weapon behind.