Thursday, 23 May, 2019

The Chicago Tribune: The case for Gina Haspel as Central Intelligence Agency director

The GOP’s ‘primary problem,’ Haspel divides the Resistance and other comments Modal Trigger Gina Haspel EPA
Deanna Wagner | 11 May, 2018, 11:30

In quiet conversations in the Capitol, more than a dozen senators - several of them McCain's friends for a quarter-century or more - acknowledged they are struggling to adjust to a Senate without the larger-than-life lawmaker in their midst.

McCain, 81, has been at home in Arizona in recent months recovering from treatment for brain cancer.

McCain said he would oppose the nomination of Haspel over her comments on the US enhanced interrogation program, stating "her role in overseeing the use of torture is disturbing", and "her refusal to acknowledge torture's immorality is disqualifying".

The reactions have been swift-now including John McCain's wife Cindy and daughter Meghan. "Nonetheless, Ms. Haspel's position in overseeing the usage of torture by People is disturbing". John McCain (R-Ariz.) in response to an administration official joking about his brain cancer being terminal, thus not dooming one of President Trump's nominees.

Gina Haspel - who's been nominated to be Central Intelligence Agency director - says she wouldn't put in place any presidential order that she thought was immoral, even if it was technically legal.

But she could not bring herself to call torture immoral, which it is. "I believe the Senate should exercise its duty of advice and consent and reject this nomination".

Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO): "It is time for Senate Dems to stop playing political games with our national security & support the nomination of Gina Haspel, the first woman ever nominated to be @CIA Director".

A number of senators introduced Thursday they might vote in favor, together with McCain's longtime ally Sen.

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Resisting the demonizing language of the far left, he acknowledged: "By many accounts from intelligence professionals, Gina Haspel is a qualified, experienced CIA veteran, who has the respect of CIA's staff".

Her performance appeared to persuade at least two key senators - Senator Susan Collins, a moderate Republican, and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin.

Vice President Mike Pence, as president of the Senate, can be called on to break a tie vote.

"Sen. McCain's view of what the nation's doing gained the day", Graham instructed AP.

She warned that confirming Haspel would ship a message to allies that the USA approves of what occurred after 9/11. "Most of all, I know the use of torture compromises that which most distinguishes us from our enemies, our belief that all people, even captured enemies, possess basic human rights, which are protected by worldwide conventions the USA not only joined, but for the most part authored".

A 2014 Senate Intelligence Committee investigation concluded that these methods were 'not an effective way of obtaining accurate information or gaining detainee cooperation'.

'I do not believe the president would ask me to do that, ' Haspel said, but did not say that she would refuse.