Politics Confirmation vote for CIA chief brings out Democratic rift

15:06  17 may  2018
15:06  17 may  2018 Source:   msn.com

The Latest: Top Senate intel Dem says he supports Haspel

  The Latest: Top Senate intel Dem says he supports Haspel The Latest on President Donald Trump's CIA nominee, Gina Haspel (all times local):2:50 p.m.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.

NEW YORK POST EDITORIAL BOARD: Gina Haspel’s Hypocritical Critics. “A 30-year veteran already serving as acting CIA chief , Haspel Haspel is a brilliant intelligence professional, an inspiration to all Americans, and deserves an overwhelming bipartisan vote in favor of her confirmation .”

Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., became the latest Democratic senator to face a grassroots backlash for voting to confirm President Donald Trump’s “He’s a Rubio guy,” the senator continued, drowned out by a chorus of booing. “Sometimes you need to be in a position to say no if something really, really

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WASHINGTON — The political schism in the Democratic Party is playing out in the confirmation vote for Gina Haspel as CIA director, as support from red-state senators facing re-election bumps up against a more liberal flank eyeing potential 2020 presidential bids and rejecting the nominee over the agency's clouded history of torture.

Haspel's confirmation became all but certain with a favorable 10-5 vote Wednesday by the Senate Intelligence Committee. Yet the division in the Senate is set in large part by the election calendar, home-state geography and personal views — and it may define Democrats for years to come.

Jeff Flake says he'll vote 'no' on Gina Haspel for CIA chief job

  Jeff Flake says he'll vote 'no' on Gina Haspel for CIA chief job Republican Sen. Jeff Flake announced Wednesday he will vote against Gina Haspel's nomination to be the next CIA director, becoming the third senator from President Donald Trump's own party to come out against his choice to lead the agency. The Senate Intelligence Committee voted 10-5 behind closed doors Wednesday to send Haspel's nomination for a full floor vote, where she looks all but assured to win Senate confirmation. Two of the committee's seven Democrats had said they supported Haspel, including Virginia's Sen. Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the panel.

Democratic Party votes to confirm Pompeo included "progressives" Sheldon Whitehouse (RI), Amy Klobuchar (MN), and Brian Schatz (HI). Now comes Trump nominee Gina Haspel for CIA chief .

The vote was 66-32 in favor of confirmation , with Pompeo picking up some Democratic backing. The only Republican in opposition was Sen. Ex- CIA chief Brennan bashes Trump over speech during CIA visit. Pompeo told the Senate that he embraced findings spelled out in a comprehensive report of

On one side is a growing list of a half-dozen Democrats whom many see as the future of the big-tent party. They are rural, noncoastal representatives of states won by President Donald Trump, places where some say the party needs to win back voters to grow beyond its urban core. Several of them have supported many of Trump's nominees.

On the other side are those living in the comfort of blue-state incumbency, including liberal leaders who may take on Trump with their own campaigns for the White House. Their opposition to Haspel fuels a fired-up base of voters who are pushing a more progressive, battle-tested party to resist the Trump agenda.

With the Senate possibly voting as soon as Thursday on the new CIA director, "this is a soul-searching, defining moment for the Democratic Party," said Elizabeth Beavers, the associate policy director at the liberal group Indivisible.

Gates: Haspel's ties to enhanced interrogation don't disqualify her from leading CIA

  Gates: Haspel's ties to enhanced interrogation don't disqualify her from leading CIA Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said Sunday he doesn't believe Gina Haspel's ties to an enhanced interrogation program that used methods now widely regarded as torture disqualifies her from serving as CIA director. "I worry about presentism. I think you have to go back to 2001, 2002, and the horror that people in the administration felt, getting reports literally every day that Washington or New York were going to be attacked again," Gates said on CBS's "Face the Nation."Haspel, President Trump's pick to lead the CIA, is in the midst of a tenuous confirmation battle.

Border Patrol chief is abruptly out after being brought in as a reformer. Three Washington state Democratic electors vote for Gen. Colin Powell, one for Faith Spotted Eagle.

Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) was confirmed as CIA chief Monday night. The Democrats who voted to confirm Pompeo were John Donnelly of Indiana, Dianne Yet, with frightening regularity, independent media sources are losing funding, closing down or being blacked out by Google and Facebook.

Beavers said senators are making a political miscalculation if they give their support to confirm a nominee "who has helped carry out torture." It's a vote, she said, "they're going to have to explain for a long time to come."

FILE - In this May 9, 2018, file photo, CIA nominee Gina Haspel testifies during a confirmation hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. The political schism in the Democratic Party is playing out in the vote for Haspel, as support from red-state senators facing re-election is bumping up against a more liberal flank eyeing potential 2020 presidential bids who reject of the nominee over the agency’s clouded history of torture. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)© The Associated Press FILE - In this May 9, 2018, file photo, CIA nominee Gina Haspel testifies during a confirmation hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington. The political schism in the Democratic Party is playing out in the vote for Haspel, as support from red-state senators facing re-election is bumping up against a more liberal flank eyeing potential 2020 presidential bids who reject of the nominee over the agency’s clouded history of torture. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File) Haspel's nomination reopened debate about the CIA's now-defunct program of detaining terror suspects overseas at secret lock-ups and subjecting them to harsh interrogation techniques. Haspel supervised one of those detention sites in Thailand, but details of her work there have not been declassified.

Gina Haspel secures crucial Democratic votes, paving way to confirmation

  Gina Haspel secures crucial Democratic votes, paving way to confirmation Four Democrats have now voiced their support for President Trump's pick to run the CIAGina Haspel, President Trump's nominee to be CIA director, on Wednesday secured two more crucial Democrat votes in her ongoing campaign for confirmation after she admitted the agency's past experience with enhanced interrogation techniques "did damage" to the CIA's officers and its standing.

The vote comes as Trump is drawing backlash for his first visit over the weekend with the intelligence agency . Speaking next to a memorial wall for fallen CIA officers, Trump rehashed a rhetorical battle over the size of the crowd at his inauguration and accused the media of fabricating a rift between the

From The Daily Caller: Cotton pointed out that several Democratic lawmakers currently on the Senate intelligence committee voted to confirm former CIA director John Brennan to the same position in 2013.

Pressure on Democrats mounted late Wednesday after a third Republican, Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona, announced his opposition to Haspel. He joined Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and fellow Arizona Sen. John McCain, whose long-distance rejection of Haspel as he battles brain cancer at home hit a political nerve. Considering the GOP's slim 51-49 majority, Democrats could easily block the nominee, a career intelligence officer who would make history as the first woman to lead the CIA.

But Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., did not take that tack. In fact, rather than forcing his caucus in line against Haspel, Schumer continued to keep his vote to himself, a gesture that allows senators to chart their own courses without the overhang of leadership.

Most in the Democratic caucus are expected to vote against Haspel — with Sen. Kamala Harris of California among those setting the progressive pace with her "no" vote Wednesday in the committee.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massacusetts and Bernie Sanders, the Vermont independent who caucuses with the Democrats, already announced their opposition. Warren tweeted that Haspel's involvement in the torture program "makes her unfit to lead the CIA." Other potential 2020 contenders, including Sens. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Kristen Gillibrand of New York, are also likely to vote against Haspel.

Sen. Joe Donnelly to back Trump's CIA pick

  Sen. Joe Donnelly to back Trump's CIA pick Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly of Indiana announced Saturday that he will support Gina Haspel's nomination for CIA director. "As our country faces dynamic and challenging security threats, it is critically important that our intelligence agencies have the leadership and support that they need to help keep Americans safe and defend our nation from those who wish to do us harm," Donnelly said in a statement.

Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), Donald Trump’s pick to head the CIA , told senators at his confirmation hearing Thursday that he would not carry out orders from the White House to use torture, a position that potentially puts him at odds with the president-elect. If confirmed as CIA chief , he said, he would

Trump has been weighing replacing Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo, Axios reported after the Trump-Tillerson rift widened specifically calling out "overwhelming Democratic opposition." Watch Tom Cotton bring the art of the awkward silence to a Senate confirmation hearing.

One red-state Democrat who has said he'll oppose Haspel, Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, has already signaled his willingness to buck Trump. He drew the president's Twitter ire after he publicly aired allegations against Veterans Affairs nominee Ronny Jackson, who later withdrew from consideration. It's an election strategy that depends on keeping his state's liberal base engaged as he fends off Trump's attacks.

Those Democrats supporting Haspel did so with varying degrees of enthusiasm. West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, one of the most endangered incumbents in the fall election, has backed all but a few Trump nominees. In Haspel, he found "an unbelievable public servant" who is trying to keep the country safe. "I feel very comfortable and very good," he said.

In a statement, Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota acknowledged this was "was not an easy decision." But she said she believes the president has the right to make his nominations, and as a senator she will "ensure Congress conducts robust oversight of the CIA under her leadership."

The concerns raised by McCain ended up capturing the attention of more Democrats than Republicans, who largely shrugged off his advice. The 81-year-old was held captive and tortured during the Vietnam War and led efforts to ban the brutal post-9/11 interrogation techniques.

Sen. Angus King, the independent from Maine, also voted against Haspel at the committee, saying he felt she was not forthcoming about her role in the torture program. The decision became less defined by partisan lines, he said, and was instead left "for every member to decide."

He sat between Democrats on the panel and, he noted, "we reached different conclusions."

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Associated Press writer Deb Riechmann contributed to this report.

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Follow Mascaro on Twitter at https://twitter.com/LisaMascaro

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