[Editor’s note: Spencer is now reporting that six Democratic members of the HSPCI have sent a letter to DCI Panetta stating that, as per Panetta’s recent testimony, Congress was misled by CIA briefers between 2001 and 2009.]
I suspect Crazy Pete Hoekstra didn’t really consider that his efforts to escalate the battle between CIA and Nancy Pelosi would backfire like this, but now Silvestre Reyes, the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee, has responded to Hoekstra’s opposition to measures to increase intelligence oversight by stating that CIA lied to Congress.
House Intelligence Chairman Silvestre Reyes has suggested Republicans avoid politicizing the intelligence authorizaton bill later this week in light of what he says is evidence the CIA "affirmatively lied to" the panel.
In a Tuesday letter to his committee’s top-ranking Republican, Peter Hoekstra of Michigan, that was obtained by Congressional Quarterly, Reyes, D-Texas, wrote that the committee has recently received information that reveals significant problems with the intelligence agency’s reporting to the panel.
"These notifications have led me to conclude this committee has been misled, has not been provided full and complete notifications, and (in at least one occasion) was affirmatively lied to," Reyes wrote.
Reyes did not describe or detail the alleged false or misleading statements to the committee.
Republicans contend a provision of the fiscal 2010 bill (HR 2701) scheduled for floor action Thursday would modify congressional notification procedures to provide political cover for Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Such briefings are a sensitive political topic, because Republicans have repeatedly criticized Pelosi over what she knew and when about the Bush administration’s use of harsh interrogation techniques and her assertion that the CIA "misled" Congress on that topic. [my emphasis]
Reyes actually gave a date when the Committee discovered it had been lied to by the CIA: June 24, squarely in the middle of CIA’s review of both the CIA IG Report and of the Office of Public Responsibility report on the John Yoo and Steven Bradbury memos.
"Like you, I was greatly concerned," Reyes told Hoekstra, about what he committee learned on June 24 and another unspecified date from CIA Director Leon E. Panetta. "As you know, I have begun to take steps to gather information on the recent notifications," Reyes wrote. "This may well lead to a full committee investigation. I believe that you share my concern, and I look forward to working on this issue with you."
Is the CIA slow-walking the CIA IG and OPR Reports because they’ll reveal that CIA was lying to Congress?
In any case, Crazy Pete thought he had an issue that could damage Pelosi’s approval ratings (and it did work, for a time). But it sounds like Reyes is considering a more complete investigation of CIA’s lies, to go along with the one SSCI is undertaking.