WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump’s CIA nominee, Gina Haspel (all times local):
The top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee says he will vote to confirm Gina Haspel to be the next CIA director. Sen. Mark Warner’s decision strengthens the likelihood that she will be confirmed by the Senate in coming days.
Warner’s announcement came after Haspel wrote him to say the CIA should never have run a harsh detention and interrogation program after 9/11. Her written comments went farther than ones she made at her confirmation hearing.
Warner, of Virginia, is the third Democrat to say he’ll vote for Haspel. The other two are Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana.
Most Republicans are expected to back Haspel, although Sen. John McCain is ailing and unlikely to vote on the nomination and Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky has announced his opposition.
President Donald Trump’s pick to head the CIA says the agency’s enhanced interrogation program “is not one the CIA should have undertaken.”
Gina Haspel’s comments came in a letter Tuesday to senators as the Trump administration works to shore up support for her confirmation amid an intensifying public debate over torture.
Haspel wrote that she has “learned the hard lessons since 9/11.” She says, “With the benefit of hindsight and my experience as a senior Agency leader, the enhanced interrogation program is not one the CIA should have undertaken.”
Haspel’s letter comes after Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona urged colleagues to reject the nominee over her past role in CIA interrogations.