Se­nate votes to con­firm 1st fe­male CIA di­rec­tor

The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH) - - NATION+WORLD -

The Se­nate con­firmed Gina Haspel on Thurs­day as the first fe­male di­rec­tor of the CIA fol­low­ing a dif­fi­cult nom­i­na­tion process that re­opened an emo­tional de­bate about bru­tal in­ter­ro­ga­tion tech­niques in one of the dark­est chap­ters in the spy agency’s his­tory.

The 54-45 vote split both par­ties, with six Democrats join­ing most Repub­li­cans in sup­port. It was the clos­est vote for a CIA nom­i­nee in nearly seven decades, since the law was changed to re­quire Se­nate con­fir­ma­tion.

Se­nate Ma­jor­ity Leader Mitch Mc­Connell, R-Ky., called Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s choice of Haspel to lead the agency “the right woman at the right time.”

Mc­Connell steered the con­fir­ma­tion swiftly past op­po­nents, in­clud­ing the ail­ing Re­pub­li­can Sen. John McCain, whose long-dis­tance re­jec­tion of the nom­i­nee over her role in the CIA’s tor­ture pro­gram hung over an im­pas­sioned de­bate. McCain, who was cap­tured and tor­tured in the Viet­nam War, is at home in Ari­zona while bat­tling brain can­cer and did not vote.

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