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Udall Calls For New Leadership in CIA General Counsel's Office, Declassification of Landmark Intelligence Committee Torture Study

Votes for New Leadership at CIA, Calls for Recusal of Acting-General Counsel Citing Lack of Trust, Clear Conflict of Interest

Posted: Thursday, March 13, 2014

Mark Udall, a strong advocate for holding the CIA accountable for its misguided detention and interrogation program, called today for new leadership in the agency's general counsel's office. He also called for the CIA's acting-general counsel to recuse himself from further deliberations about that program and issues related to the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. Udall said the acting-general counsel's role in the controversial program itself and his efforts to intimidate Senate Intelligence Committee staff underscores his inability to be involved in reviewing the study and related issues. 

Udall, a member of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, released his procedural hold today on the nomination of Caroline Krass to be the CIA's general counsel, citing the conflict of interest of the acting-general counsel, as well as a firm and clear commitment by the president to declassify the committee's landmark report on the CIA's detention and interrogation program.

"We need to correct the record on the CIA's coercive detention and interrogation program and declassify the Senate Intelligence Committee's exhaustive study of it. I released my hold on Caroline Krass's nomination today and voted for her to help change the direction of the agency," Udall said. "The president has stated an unequivocal commitment to supporting the declassification of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report. Coloradans expect me to hold him to his word."

Udall has been the leading voice in Congress for the White House and CIA to come clean about the agency's deeply flawed detention and interrogation program. Last week, he pressed the White House to publically commit to declassifying the Senate Intelligence Committee's landmark study on the CIA's misguided program.

During a confirmation hearing for the CIA's general counsel in December, Udall pressed nominee Caroline Krass on discrepancies between a CIA internal review of its detention and interrogation program and the official agency response to the committee's study. He said the contents of the internal review raise "fundamental questions about why a review the CIA conducted internally years ago ... is so different from the CIA's formal written response to the committee study."

By: Mike Saccone
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