Washington, D.C.—This evening, in a briefing provided to Congress by the Obama Administration regarding the negotiated release of five senior Taliban leaders, Congressman Turner asked the following question: 

"Beyond the issue of lack of notification of Congress and judgment about whether or not this was a good decision for America, I’m very concerned that this action signals a significant shift in the U.S. policy that we do not negotiate with terrorists. Can you tell me any time in the last 40 years when our country has undertaken a swap of this nature with any other non-sovereign state?"

After a short discussion, briefers agreed that there was no precedent in the last 40 years for the kind of prisoner exchange that has been undertaken with the Taliban. Further, Turner pointed that the Taliban was a terrorist organization. 

“There has been a significant shift in U.S. policy. 

As a result of this administration’s negotiated swap with a non-sovereign, rogue terrorist organization, both American soldiers and civilians have been put at risk,” said Congressman Turner.