CIA nominee backs intel report, talks tough against Russia
Donald Trump’s pick to run the CIA took a tough stand Thursday against Russia, distancing himself from the president-elect.
Rep. Mike Pompeo, a four-term conservative Kansas Republican, spoke at his confirmation hearing before the Senate intelligence committee amid a testy standoff between Trump and the spy community over Russian activities during the election.
He said he accepts the findings in an intelligence assessment that Russia interfered in the U.S. election with the goal of helping Trump win.
On Russia, his message was clear and tough. “Russia has reasserted itself aggressively, invading and occupying Ukraine, threatening Europe and doing nothing to aid in the defeat of ISIS,” Pompeo said, referring to Islamic State militants.
If confirmed, Pompeo would take the helm of the CIA in what he said was the “most complicated threat environment the United States has faced in recent memory.”