Washington, US | May 16
Gina Haspel, President Donald Trump’s nominee to head the CIA, won the backing of the Senate intelligence committee on Wednesday, paving the way for her expected confirmation to lead the spy agency.
The panel voted 10-5 to advise the full Senate to confirm Haspel, whose nomination has renewed debate over the harsh interrogation program the CIA conducted on terror suspects after 9/11.
Haspel, who supervised a CIA detention site in Thailand in 2002, has told Congress that the agency shouldn’t have used those harsh tactics and has vowed not to restart them.
The committee released the result of the vote, conducted in closed session, without giving further details. However, all eight Republicans and two of the seven Democrats on the panel earlier expressed support for Haspel.
The remaining five Democrats had announced their opposition. The confirmation vote by the full Senate could occur before the end of the week.
“Gina Haspel is the most qualified person the president could choose to lead the CIA and the most prepared nominee in the 70 year history of the agency,” said Chairman Richard Burr, RN.C. She also had the support of the committee’s top-ranking Democrat, Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia.