WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, issued the following statement in response to the announcement that the Committee will hold an open confirmation hearing on Wednesday, May 9th, 2018, on the nomination of Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence (CIA) Agency Gina Haspel to become Director of the CIA:
“I am dismayed that the Committee has chosen to schedule a nomination hearing for Gina Haspel before the CIA has responded to numerous letters that I and my colleagues on the Committee have sent asking for further declassification of her troubling record.
“The Director of National Intelligence said that every effort will be made to fully explain exactly what her role was and what it wasn’t. If that declassification effort is complete, it is wholly inadequate. And if it is continuing, we do not yet know where the CIA has drawn the line between classified and unclassified information – which limits the utility of a public hearing for members and the public.
“As I recently wrote to CIA Director Pompeo, the American people expect and deserve to understand the backgrounds of their government’s leaders, and without further declassification, I don’t believe the Senate Intelligence Committee or the Senate as a whole can properly fulfill its constitutional obligation to ‘advise and consent’ on her nomination.”
In a letter earlier this week, Senator Heinrich, along with U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), asked for the fifth time that CIA Director Mike Pompeo declassify information related to the background of CIA Deputy Director Gina Haspel.