Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Interrogation Probe Should Include What Pelosi Knew, Hoyer Says

May 12, 2009 – 1:09 p.m.
By Edward Epstein, CQ Staff

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer said Tuesday that investigations into the Bush administration’s use of so-called enhanced interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects should look into what congressional leaders, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi , knew about the methods that have been criticized as torture.

Republicans have made a daily drumbeat out of their criticism of Pelosi for saying that she was never told in September 2002 that such harsh techniques were being used on suspects in CIA custody. The Speaker, who served 10 years on the House Intelligence Committee, says she was told at a classified briefing that the Bush administration had come up with legal opinions saying such techniques were legal.

But Pelosi, a critic of the techniques, has said that she was never told at the time they were actually being used on suspects. Pelosi said she only later learned of the use of waterboarding, a form of simulated drowning, and concurred with a protest lodged with the CIA by Rep. Jane Harman in 2003.

“Frankly, information about what was said, when it was said, who said it, that ought to be on the record so the American public knows,” Hoyer said.

Asked if the GOP criticism of Pelosi had lessened her support among House Democrats, Hoyer answered with a terse: “No.”

In a December 2007 statement, Pelosi said she knew of Harman’s objection to the use of waterboarding. (...Continue - full story)

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