Trump’s CIA choice riles civil liberties crowd

The choice of the 58-year-old Kansas Republican alarms privacy advocates, who are already gearing up to fight his nomination. President-elect Donald Trump’s surprise decision Friday to nominate Rep. Mike Pompeo to run the CIA would place a hawk who has butted heads with Muslim-American groups and wants to roll back reforms of domestic surveillance programs atop one of the nation’s leading spy agencies.The choice of the 58-year-old Kansas Republican, a rising star on the Intelligence Committee who was just reelected to his fourth term, alarmed privacy advocates, who are already gearing up to fight his nomination. The American Civil Liberties Union swiftly blasted Pompeo for beliefs it said raise “serious civil liberties concerns about privacy and due process.”But the announcement was cheered by his colleagues in both parties, intelligence professionals and former CIA and National Security Agency chief Michael Hayden, who has been highly critical of Trump’s lack of knowledge on national security matters.“Frankly … when I saw the choice I was heartened,” Hayden said Friday at an event sponsored by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.“Kansans can be proud Mike Pompeo will lead the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and will be in a position to protect our national security at a time of increasing and varying global threats,” Sen. Pat Roberts, who chaired the Senate Intelligence panel from 2002 to 2006, in a statement.Pompeo “has had the kind of military and private sector experience commensurate with the demands of a CIA director,” the Kansas Republican added. “He is a good and wise selection. I was proud to recommend him to the transition team and will work to ensure his Senate confirmation is swift.”A former Army officer, Pompeo, 52, graduated first in his class at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and graduated from Harvard Law School before working at Williams and Connolly, a top D.C. law firm. He joined the Intelligence Committee in 2013 and has also been a vocal member of the controversial special committee investigating the deaths of four American diplomats and spies in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012 that Democrats have slammed as a political witch hunt.

Source: Trump’s CIA choice riles civil liberties crowd – POLITICO