Former CIA official and CNN counterterrorism analyst Phil Mudd tore into Democrats over their criticism of President Trump’s nominee for CIA director, Gina Haspel, and past interrogation techniques.
“Let’s go dirty and let’s go ugly.”
Mudd was responding to comments from Senator Kamala Harris (D-California), who criticized Haspel and said she would voting against her confirmation as CIA director.
“You used to work for the CIA, what’s your reaction?” Jake Tapper asked Mudd.
“She spoke about American values and spoke about the rule of law,” Mudd responded. “I appreciate what she votes on, she can vote however she wants.”
“I don’t appreciate the collective amnesia,” he said. “Let’s go dirty and let’s go ugly.”
“I was among the CIA officers fifteen years ago who spoke with the Congress in detail about the techniques we used,” he explained. “I spoke about the techniques that were authorized by the Department of Justice, I spoke to Republicans and Democrats, they were either silent or supportive.”
“We talked to the people who represent rule of law,” he continued, “I can’t help that they’re Republicans. They were voted on by the American people when they voted for a Republican president. They were the highest lawyers in the land including the attorney general. They told us this was not torture, that it complied with the Constitution, and it complied with U.S. law.”
“I am pissed off!”
“You can vote against Gina Haspel,” he said, “but don’t give me the collective amnesia about how it’s on CIA.”
“I want to talk to the Senators who told us, that they represented American values, and conveniently in 2002 and in 2003, this represented American values,” he continued, “now that we don’t face the same threat and that we have different Senators, it’s OK to attack one of my former colleagues.”
“I am pissed off!” he exclaimed. “This collective amnesia! We didn’t do it, America did it, get over it!”
Here’s the video of Mudd’s comments:
Haspel went before the Senate Intelligence Committee seeking confirmation to be the next CIA director after Mike Pompeo, who left the position after accepting Trump’s nomination for Secretary of State.