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Goss approved by Senate panel to head CIA

Sept. 21, 2004 at 12:31 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- A Senate committee Tuesday approved the nomination of Rep. Porter Goss to head the CIA, opening the door for full Senate approval as soon as Wednesday.

The Florida Republican's approval comes against the objections of Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee who argue that Goss was too partisan for the position.

Committee Vice Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-W.VA., said in a statement following the vote that he opposed Goss for the role because of his repeated past use of intelligence issues for partisan purposes.

"While I appreciate his testimony and commitment to non-partisanship if confirmed, I must vote on his record, not his promises," said Rockefeller.

He and other Democrats also charged that as chairman of the House Intelligence Committee for the past seven years, Goss has done little to enact reforms of the nation's intelligence community.

But Republicans on the panel, including Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., defended Goss as the right man for the job given his past experience as an agency operative and service on Capitol Hill on intelligence matters.

Despite the debate over Goss' record, all indications are that the entire Senate will approve him for the role.

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