Trump’s nomination of Haspel to head CIA becomes world-class fustercluck
Gina Haspel, President Trump’s nominee to become the next CIA director, sought to withdraw her nomination Friday after some White House officials worried that her role in the interrogation of terrorist suspects could prevent her confirmation by the Senate, according to four senior U.S. officials.
Haspel told the White House she was interested in stepping aside if it avoided the spectacle of a brutal confirmation hearing on Wednesday and potential damage to the CIA’s reputation and her own, the officials said. She was summoned to the White House on Friday for a meeting on her history in the CIA’s controversial interrogation program — which employed techniques such as waterboarding that are widely seen as torture — and signaled that she was going to withdraw her nomination. She then returned to CIA headquarters, the officials said.
Taken aback at her stance, senior White House aides, including legislative affairs head Marc Short and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, rushed to Langley, Va., to meet with Haspel at her office late Friday afternoon. Discussions stretched several hours, officials said, and the White House was not entirely sure she would stick with her nomination until Saturday afternoon, according to the officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.
Of course, the above WaPo scoop could undo the damage control completely. And maybe that’s why White House spokesliar Sarah Huckabee Slanders, in a vain effort to downplay clandestine torture, decided to play the “woman card” yesterday:
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is accusing Democrats who support women’s empowerment but don’t support Gina Haspel’s nomination to be CIA director of being hypocrites.
“There is no one more qualified to be the first woman to lead the CIA than 30+ year CIA veteran Gina Haspel,” Sanders tweeted on Saturday. “Any Democrat who claims to support women’s empowerment and our national security but opposes her nomination is a total hypocrite.”
There is no one more qualified to be the first woman to lead the CIA than 30+ year CIA veteran Gina Haspel. Any Democrat who claims to support women’s empowerment and our national security but opposes her nomination is a total hypocrite
— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) May 5, 2018
Um, no, Sarah. Haspel’s gender does not trump (excuse the pun) complicity in criminal torture.
But then, we would not have had this issue if Trump didn’t nominate the “best people” to induce chaos and outrage.