Tactics and Substance in the 2004 Elections GoogleNews: Howard Dean

June 7, 2004

by V

People who have more information than me

Senator Bob Graham, Senator Chuck Hagel and Newsweek's CIA reporter Evan Thomas got together last week on the NewsHour to try and make sense of the Tenet resignation. Interesting bits:

Online NewsHour: CIA Director George Tenet's Resignation -- June 3, 2004
MARGARET WARNER: So Evan, why is George Tenet leaving now? I mean, is he stepping off the ship voluntarily, or was he pushed?

EVAN THOMAS: I think it's voluntary. I think you have to take him at his word that he wants to go to high school with his son. I believe that, but it is also true that he faces -- faced a really rough summer when there was going to be a staff report from the Senate Intelligence Committee. There was going -- it was going to be very rough on the CIA, and he was going to be sitting there on the griddle all summer long unable to get out of his job until at least until after the election. This is his last chance to get out before the heat really got hot...

...WARNER: Where does this resignation leave the CIA, in some sort of limbo under a temporary number two? Evan Thomas, what are people saying inside the agency about the impact that this will have?

EVAN THOMAS: I think that they are going to be limping, the word is that McLaughlin is a nice guy, a good guy, but he's not the guy that will go in and blow it up and make the kind of massive reforms they were talking about...

MARGARET WARNER: Briefly to both senators, Sen. Hagel, do you think the president in this election season could appoint a new director, or do you think really it's going to await the election?

SEN. CHUCK HAGEL: I don't know. I suspect that he's dealing with that right now. He must deal with it. It may well be he could make a case either way that it's better to just let this move through the system and wait until after November, rather than try to get a new director in place in the middle of the reports, in the middle of the assessments. I don't know what he'll do, and -- but, again, either way I think the CIA can -- and our intelligence community can work their way through this until a decision is made.

MARGARET WARNER: And what's your judgment on that issue, Sen. Graham, about whether the president could get a new person confirmed, whether he ought to move quickly to put in a new permanent head?

SEN. BOB GRAHAM: He should move quickly to put in a new permanent head. We can't afford to have seven months of drift in our intelligence community. We're in enough trouble as it is today. It will become deeper if we are leaderless for the rest of this year.

Posted by V at June 7, 2004 10:26 PM

Recommended Reading:

The Politics of Truth: Inside the Lies that Led to War and Betrayed My Wife's CIA Identity: A Diplomat's Memoir
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Worse Than Watergate: The Secret Presidency of George W. Bush
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LIES by Al Franken
Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right

The Great Unraveling
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The Great Big Book of Tomorrow
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