Haspel Secures Clear Route to Confirmation for CIA

(CN) – Gina Haspel secured enough support to win confirmation as President Donald Trump’s CIA director Tuesday after the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mark Warner, said he would vote in her favor.

“I acknowledge that this has been a difficult decision,” the Virginia Democrat said. “I have been frank with Ms. Haspel that I wish she had been more open with the American public during this process.”

Warner’s announcement came hours after Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota said she would also support Haspel’s nomination.

Haspel has now won votes from four Democratic senators, allowing her to overcome any potential remaining opposition from either side of the aisle.

Warner’s support came after Haspel supplied him with a letter in which she said the central controversy dogging her nomination —  the harsh interrogation program the CIA ran at black sites after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, D.C. — should not have been undertaken.

“I have learned the hard lessons since 9/11,” Haspel wrote. “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 said she would “refuse to undertake any proposed activity that is contrary to my moral and ethical values.”

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