According to Democratic insiders, the public announcement that liberal Sen. Mark Udall is fighting with the Obama administration over a stolen detention and interrogation treatment report is nothing more than an elaborate ruse to distance the embattled Senator from the unpopular President. Lynn Bartels at The Denver Post reported on the skirmish:
Various news agencies reported the CIA is now investigating whether its officers improperly monitored committee staffers and possibly their computers after Udall publicly revealed in December the existence of an internal CIA report that contradicted public comments about the program. The CIA questioned how the committee got the report.
“I’m deeply concerned that the CIA is trying to subvert congressional oversight through intimidation,” Udall told The Post. “My job is to fight like hell to make sure the CIA never dodges congressional oversight again and that the White House publicly commits to declassify as much of the intelligence’s committee report as possible.”
He conceded that might not make him popular with the president, but Udall said his oversight role is “sacred, regardless of who is in the White House.”
Right, Sen. Udall. Let us remind you, PeakNation™, that this is the man who voted for President Obama’s agenda 99% of the time. Udall’s White House criticism rings a little hollow. But, this revelation from a Democratic strategist highlights two questions:
1) How did Udall and Obama sneak this scheme past Bloodhound for BS, Lynn Bartels?
2) Who actually stole the CIA documents from the CIA? Here’s the summary of the situation from McClatchy:
Congressional aides involved in preparing the Senate Intelligence Committee’s unreleased study of the CIA’s secret interrogation and detention program walked out of the spy agency’s fortress-like headquarters with classified documents that the CIA contended they weren’t authorized to have, McClatchy has learned.
And more about the stolen docs from McClatchy:
Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., a member of the Intelligence Committee who has led calls for the release of the report, disclosed at a hearing in December the existence of the Panetta review without saying how the committee had learned of it.
UPDATE: Thanks ColoradoPols for confirming our source:
Politically, this latest clash with the Obama administration over national security policies (and excesses) is quite good for Sen. Udall. With President Barack Obama’s approval numbers suffering post-Obamacare rollout, Udall’s public role in opposition to controversial national security issues like harsh interrogation methods and domestic surveillance provide a means of differentiating Udall from Obama with Colorado’s independent electorate.