Clapper to Be Sworn In as National Intelligence Director on Tuesday

Posted August 24, 2010 at 12:39pm

Vice President Joseph Biden will swear in James Clapper as the new director of national intelligence on Tuesday afternoon.

Clapper, a retired Air Force lieutenant general serving as undersecretary of Defense for intelligence, will be sworn in at 3 p.m. in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.

Clapper was unanimously approved by the Senate earlier this month — just two days after a GOP hold threatened the Obama administration’s pick. Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) had placed a hold on Clapper’s nomination to press the administration to share a classified intelligence report assessing the threat of detainees at the U.S. facility at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. But McCain lifted his hold shortly thereafter.

Clapper will fill the post previously held by retired Adm. Dennis Blair. Blair stepped down in May after a rocky 16-month stint, during which he had strained relations with White House officials. He also faced increased scrutiny following the attempted bombing at Times Square in New York, the shootings at Fort Hood in Texas and the attempted bombing of a commercial jet over Detroit.

The director of national intelligence, a position created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, oversees 16 spy agencies.