Harman, Hoekstra agree on CIA tapes probe

Dec. 16, 2007 at 7:41 PM
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WASHINGTON, Dec. 16 (UPI) -- Two leading U.S. House members, a Democrat and a Republican, insist Congress will probe the CIA's destruction of tapes showing interrogation of terror suspects.

Speaking on "Fox News Sunday," Rep. Peter Hoekstra, R-Mich., said the House Intelligence Committee will issue subpoenas -- over objections by the Central Intelligence Agency and the Justice Department -- as part of its investigation into the videotapes matter.

"And once these witnesses appear in front of the committee, then I think we'll have to make the decision as to whether we're going to provide them with immunity or not," said Hoekstra, the panel's ranking Republican. "But our investigation should move forward.

"They need -- there's a constitutional responsibility for them to keep Congress informed, and they have not, and we need to hold them accountable."

Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., who chairs the Intelligence Committee, agreed the congressional inquiry can occur at the same time as the Justice Department's investigation, a parallel track common in other cases.

"We're an independent branch of government," she said. "And, oh by the way, part of this is that Congress, specifically I, warned them not to destroy the videotapes. I sent them a letter in 2003, and they did it anyway. And they didn't tell us.

"It smells like the coverup of the coverup."

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