Arizona's Flake opposes Haspel for Central Intelligence Agency chief

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McCain, who has been absent from the Senate during treatment for brain cancer, survived torture as a prisoner during the Vietnam War.

Among those who supported her nomination were six former CIA directors - Porter Goss, John Brennan, Leon Panetta, George Tenet, William Webster and Mike Hayden - and three former national intelligence directors - James Clapper, Mike McConnell and John Negroponte.

It became clear Wednesday that Haspel would be confirmed after she won the endorsement of the Senate Intelligence Committee by a vote of 10-5.

"She has earned the respect of the agency workforce, of her peers, of Republicans, of Democrats, of military officers, of civilian security leaders, evidenced by the number of letters received in support of her nomination too numerous to read", Burr said on the Senate floor.

Harris says Haspel's unwillingness to share more detailed information about the CIA's use of enhanced interrogation techniques is "deeply troubling".

Haspel has pledged not to implement an interrogation program of that kind again.

Haspel immediately came under intense scrutiny for two specific episodes in her long career. But several of her opponents pointed to the fact that the Justice Department's report from the special counsel who investigated the destruction of the tapes was available only to senators on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and not the full body.

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Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire also voted in favor of Haspel's confirmation.

Haspel's supporters cited her 33-year career at the agency.

While in her hearing she notably declined to describe the interrogation methods as "immoral", she wrote in a follow-up letter to lawmakers that the harsh program "is not one the Central Intelligence Agency should have undertaken". Haspel has vowed not to restart such a program, but has declined to disclose details about her involvement. The remaining five Democrats had announced their opposition.

McCaskill is running for re-election in a state Republican President Donald Trump won by almost 19 percentage points. Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat on the intelligence committee. The Senate confirmed Haspel, 54 to 45.

Haspel faced a tough nomination and confirmation process.

It didn't matter much one way or the other how McCaskill votes on Haspel, who already had garnered more than enough support to be confirmed, said Kyle Kondik, managing editor of Sabato's Crystal Ball, the University of Virginia Center for Politics' nonpartisan newsletter that analyzes races.

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