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The CIA ‘misled Congress five times since 2001’



Update at bottom: Senior intel official concedes Congress was misled

From The Hill:

The CIA misled Congress at least five times since 2001, according to Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.

The Democrats said CIA officials had either lied or withheld information from Congress. They also said CIA officials did not fully inform Congress about the use of enhanced interrogation techniques during a September 2002 briefing, which would validate House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) claim that she was lied to about the program.

The ongoing probe found the practice of incomplete briefings or outright lying was part of a “large disease” of misinforming even the chairmen of the select intelligence committees, Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) said at a Tuesday press briefing that highlighted the early findings.

Schakowsky and Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) are leading two subcommittees investigating the legitimacy of intelligence briefings to Congress.


Read the rest at The Hill.

A Fox News blog notes that a “senior intelligence official conceded Tuesday that the intelligence community has failed to fully inform Congress about some of its spying activities.”

Robert Litt, chief counsel for the Director of National Intelligence, “testified before the House Intelligence Committee Tuesday that the spies didn’t tell Congress about a small number of operations.”

“We have an obligation to get you the information that you need to provide oversight. And the scope of what we provide you needs to be adequate to permit you to provide oversight of the intelligence community,” Litt said.

Litt added, “I think that when some of the agencies went back and looked at their records, they found a couple of matters where they had determined not to brief. And they relooked at it and decided probably ought to be briefed. But those were a few isolated instances.”

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Dalai Lama says President Trump has a ‘lack of moral principle’



During an interview with the BBC’s Rajini Vaidyanathan, the Dalai Lama weighed in on everything from Donald Trump’s presidency to Brexit — and the Tibetan spiritual leader clearly isn’t a fan of Trump’s isolationist views.

“When he became president, he expressed, ‘America first.’ That is wrong,” the Dalai Lama told Vaidyanathan. “America, they should take the global responsibility.”

The Dalai Lama also described the U.S. president as scatterbrained, saying that his “emotions” are a “little bit too complicated.”

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2020 Election

Fox News mocks Beto O’Rourke’s debate performance: He looked ‘as miserable as a dog in a thunderstorm’



Former Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-TX) did his best to stand out at the first Democratic debate on Thursday night, breaking into fluent Spanish in his opening segment and competing with fellow Texan Julián Castro for the spotlight.

But the morning crew at Fox News was not impressed by his performance, lambasting him for looking "miserable."

"Neediness can be charming in a candidate to a certain degree," said political analyst Chris Stirewalt. "Especially for Castro, who couldn’t speak Spanish as well as his fellow Texan, Beto O'Rourke."

"O'Rourke, though — no matter what language he was doing, he seemed sad. He seemed unhappy. He seemed uncomfortable to be there," said Stirewalt. "He seemed like he was doing this all through a prism of real social discomfort, and I don't know what happens for him from here. He, of anybody on the stage, needed that night to get back into the second tier to show that he was doing it, and he looked as miserable as a dog in a thunderstorm."

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2020 Election

First Democratic debate: Elizabeth Warren persists — but Julián Castro is the star



With two dozen candidates announced and the possibility of ousting Donald Trump in the 2020 elections on voters' brains, the anticipation for the first of many Democratic primary debates, held in Miami on Wednesday night, was at a high pitch. But that can only be matched by the cynicism of our era. It was worth wondering whether, despite all the hype, this debate could even matter?

Good news, for once: The answer is yes.

Because most voters just vote for whoever their party nominates, debates don't matter "once we get to the general," University of Wisconsin political science professor Kenneth Mayer recently told Salon in a video interview.

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