May 11, 2018

Udall Calls on Senate to Reject Gina Haspel’s Nomination to Serve as CIA Director

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall called on the Senate to reject Gina Haspel’s nomination to serve as CIA Director due to her involvement with the CIA’s unlawful “enhanced interrogation" program:

"The CIA’s torture of detainees in U.S. custody was a stain on our history and our standing in the world. While Acting Director Haspel’s qualifications and expertise are evident, her oversight of the CIA’s now outlawed torture program, and refusal to fully repudiate it, should be disqualifying.

"Torture is contrary to America's principles and fundamentally undercuts our moral authority on human rights. It is also an ineffective tool in the battle against terrorism that yields bad intelligence and puts American lives at risk. Right now, we have an administration led by a president who has expressed a clear interest in resuming the very ‘enhanced interrogation’ techniques that Acting Director Haspel oversaw. Now more than ever, we need a CIA director who fundamentally opposes and will stand forcefully against torture – not someone who has rationalized this shameful practice in the past and refuses to acknowledge that it was immoral.

“At this trying moment in our history, we must listen to heroes like my good friend Senator McCain, who speaks from experience and with moral clarity on an issue that is at the core of how we define ourselves as a nation. I urge the Senate to send a clear message to the world by rejecting Acting Director Haspel’s nomination – and showing that we will never compromise on the values that make our nation great.”