ACLU Comment on Senate Committee Vote to Advance Haspel Nomination to CIA

May 16, 2018 10:15 am

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WASHINGTON — In a secret vote today, the Senate Intelligence Committee voted 10-5 to advance Gina Haspel, Trump’s nominee for CIA director, to a full Senate vote.

Christopher Anders, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Washington Legislative Office, said:

“The confirmation process carried out by the Senate Intelligence Committee chair Richard Burr and vice chair Mark Warner has been an embarrassment to our democracy. What we’ve seen from the committee is a cover-up, not a serious inquiry.

“Given the volume and seriousness of the issues surrounding this nominee, the committee decided to take a hard pass on carrying out its responsibilities.

“They had a great opportunity to inform the public about torture that occurred in the United States’ name during the Bush administration, and yet we learned almost no new information. They had an opportunity to demand more public understanding about the destruction of torture evidence, and yet we learned almost no new information. They had an opportunity to make more transparent the role that Haspel played in these and other illegal acts, and yet we learned almost no new information.

“The committee let Gina Haspel get away with hiding the entirety of her torture record, and voted for her even as she refused to say that the use of torture was morally wrong.

“With this closed-door vote, the Senate Intelligence Committee is rewarding a dark, criminal chapter of our history when it should have not even agreed to a vote until significant information was made public. As the nomination of Haspel moves to the full Senate, hopefully other senators will demand more information and do the job that the committee failed to.”

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