Obama Picks Leon Panetta as CIA Director – Democrat Senators Feinstein and Rockefeller Choke on His Lack of Intelligence Experience
US president-elect Barack Obama has chosen former lawmaker and White House chief of staff Leon Panetta, pictured in 2006, to head the Central Intelligence Agency, US media reported Monday
Both Senators Feinstein and Rockefeller were nonplussed and may oppose Panetta’s confirmation.
- Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who this week begins her tenure as the first female chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said today that she was not consulted on the choice and indicated she might oppose it.
- “I was not informed about the selection of Leon Panetta to be the CIA director,” Feinstein said. “My position has consistently been that I believe the agency is best served by having an intelligence professional in charge at this time.”
- A senior aide to Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), outgoing chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said that the senator “would have concerns” about a Panetta nomination.
- Rockefeller “thinks very highly of Panetta,” the aide said. “But he’s puzzled by the selection. He has concerns because he has always believed that the director of CIA needs to be someone with significant operational intelligence experience, and someone outside the political realm.”
Panetta would report to the Director of National Intelligence, Retired Admiral Dennis Blair who is also an Obama nominee and also faces confirmation by the Senate.
In the meantime, if the President-elect does NOT afford senior California Senator Dianne Feinstein the respect that she feels she is earned, Di Fi may very well return the favor by leaving the Senate Intelligence Committee Chairmanship to run for California Governor in 2010. Her term in the Senate expires in 2012.
Look for increasing crticism of this Obama nomination and its eventual withdrawal. The wrong man for the wrong job here.
Technorati Tags: Leon Panetta, Jay Rockefeller, Dianne Feinstein
Uhmm.. Panetta might be a good choice.. Thats exactly how Obama’s transition works.. Pick someone not necessarily fit for the job.. It’s worth a try..
Too bad diva dianne was not notified. Boo hoo. At least Panetta is not a DINO as are feinstein and rockefeller. Just look at their voting records. Leon Panetta will be an honest welcomed change.
maybe someone who thinks ‘outside the box’ will be a sucess.
I’m pretty sure Lincoln surrounded himself in very much the same way Obama is doing for himself..
Something screwy here. Appointing Panetta looks like Obama is doing someone a favor. Kinda quid pro quo. Look at all his other appointments, and they’re either political heavyweights, or highly qualified for the job. Wonder where Panetta fits? No doubt we’ll find out soon enough, exactly how Panetta was chosen. Darn sure there’s a scandal inside there somewhere.
The LEFT loves this appointment and the more moderate Senators will Sarah Palin the appointment at the confirmation hearings – you know, unqualified in intelligence matters.
The GOP should oppose the nomination and allow the Democrats to either approve him with their majority or not.
My bet is that the nomination will be withdrawn.