Trump's Central Intelligence Agency pick grilled over role in harsh interrogation system

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The former California attorney-general comes across as cerebrally arrogant, a Barack Obama with edge. But neither she nor senators spent much time exploring the topic during the hearing. Cheney was adamant that through the CIA's interrogation techniques, the US was able to gain valuable intelligence that prevented another mass casualty attack on USA soil. "I don't believe that torture works", she added.

It remains unclear whether the appeals from McCain and Feinstein - who together comprise the Senate's moral conscience on matters related to torture - will sway any lawmakers on the fence about Haspel's nomination from voting for her.

"Senator, I believe that Central Intelligence Agency officials to whom you refer ..." "It's a yes-or-no answer".

He says the methods the USA employs to keep the nation safe must be as right and just as the values that Americans aspire to live up to and promote in the world.

"The CIA's use of torture after 9/11 not only undermined our core values as a nation, it did not make us safer", Sen. I believed in it.

At which point Kamala Harris's eyes began to roll.

She says, "we don't have interrogators and we don't have interrogation expertise".

Rumours have long swirled that Haspel appeared in the tapes. A lot of people try to call it that, but it wasn't deemed torture at the time.

Protesters twice were removed from the chamber.

The protesters were among the first to be allowed into the hearing room and wore signs that read "No Torture No Gina" and "Don't Reward Torturers". "Her refusal to acknowledge torture's immorality is disqualifying", said McCain, who was detained and beaten in prison during the Vietnam War.

California media had initially seen Ms. Feinstein as seemingly open to supporting her as the replacement for Mike Pompeo, who moved over to Secretary of State.

"That's why they call him 'Songbird John, '" he said. Nor were they unlawful.

It helps Haspel's chances of getting confirmed in what has been a contentious process. She is who they are. She said on CNN she would vote against the nomination.

In a tweet late Wednesday, Trump gushed: "Gina Haspel did a spectacular job today".

Besides her prosecutorial style, there are other reasons for her popularity.

"So how does President Donald Trump think he can get this nomination approved?" She doesn't back down.

Trump, Kim meeting set Fear of Islam must not drive United States foreign policy Pence: One of the detainees said he hadn't seen daylight "in a very long time" MORE to lead the CIA - pointed to Haspel's involvement in the agency's "enhanced interrogation" program, which is now widely viewed as torture, as his reasoning for the vote.

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