Clyburn Says Pelosi Owes No Apologies

Posted May 18, 2009 at 11:36am

House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.) on Monday insisted that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has “absolutely nothing to apologize for— after accusing the CIA of lying to her in 2002 about its use of harsh interrogation techniques.

Clyburn’s comments on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe— were in response to a call by House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Sunday for Pelosi to apologize to intelligence professionals for her accusation. Pelosi told reporters Thursday that the CIA had knowingly misled Members about the use of interrogation tactics.

The idea of the CIA misleading people “is nothing new,— Clyburn said.

The No. 3 House Democrat noted that former CIA Director Porter Goss said Pelosi was “likely— but not definitely told about the use of harsh interrogation techniques. And former Sen. Bob Graham (D-Fla.), ex-chairman of the Intelligence Committee, said not to put “too much stock in what the CIA was saying,— Clyburn said.

Even Barry Goldwater, the infamously conservative former presidential candidate and Senator from Arizona, “one time said that the CIA was lying to him,— Clyburn said.

The charges against Pelosi are “much ado about nothing,— Clyburn said. He echoed Pelosi’s call for a “truth commission— to pin down who knew what, and when, about the use of enhanced interrogation techniques on terrorism detainees.