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Public wary of Bergdahl deal

  • McClatchy Washington Bureau
  • Published Monday, June 9, 2014, at 3:22 p.m.
  • Updated Monday, June 9, 2014, at 3:35 p.m.

The Obama administration’s decision to swap Taliban captive Bowe Bergdahl for five Guantanamo detainees gets more negative than positive ratings from the public, according to national survey by the Pew Research Center and USA TODAY.

Overall, 43 percent say it was wrong to exchange five Taliban prisoners for Bergdahl, while 34 percent say it was the right thing to do; 23 percent didn’t offer an opinion.

The survey, however, found that 56 percent say the U.S. has a responsibility to do all it can to return an American captive soldier, no matter what the circumstances; 29 percent say that because Bergdahl reportedly left his post, the U.S. was not obligated to do all it could to secure his release

Opinions are deeply divided along partisan lines, the poll says. Fully 71 percent of Republicans think the prisoner exchange was wrong, while just 16 percent say it was the right thing to do. Democrats, by more than two-to-one -- 55 percent to 24 percent -- have a positive opinion.

The survey was conducted June 5-8 among 1,004 adults.

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