No Freeh Ride For FBI Director
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, March 6) -- FBI Director Louis Freeh took a beating Wednesday before the House Appropriations subcommittee that oversees the Justice Department. Lawmakers hammered Freeh on topics ranging from the Atlanta Olympic bombing leak of Richard Jewell's name to the FBI files flap at the White House to problems with criminal background checks of thousands of people seeking citizenship last year. The FBI's reputation "appears to be falling apart, tattered just in the last two years, unfortunately during your reign," said Rep. Bob Livingston (R-La.), chairman of the full Appropriations panel. "The only asset I've built up over the years is my reputation for integrity," said Freeh. "If you lose confidence in my integrity, then I should not be FBI director."
Shelby: Lake's Answers Inadqeuate
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, March 6) -- CIA director-designate Anthony Lake may also be in for some rough sledding in his confirmation hearings next week. Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Shelby called Lake's responses to the panel's questions inadequate and commented on Lake's nomination in an unusual speech on the Senate floor Wednesday. "This leader must be worthy of the confidence of the president, the Congress and, yes, the American people," Shelby said. The Senate, he said, must address Lake's "ability to make the transition from a White House insider to an apolitical provider of intelligence information."
Cronkite Takes A Swing At Christian Right
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, March 6) -- Former CBS news anchorman Walter Cronkite has engaged the religious right in battle, taking the Christian Coalition's Pat Robertson and Ralph Reed to task for "wrapping their harsh right wing views in the banner of religious faith." "My principal thrust here is to try to help establish that they do not speak for what I believe is the majority of Christians in the country," he told The Associated Press Wednesday. Cronkite signed a fund-raising letter that the Interfaith Alliance sent to 400,000 homes last week. A spokesman for the group, Jon Paone, told AP that more than $100,000 had been received in just over a week. "Walter Cronkite has, as every other citizen does, the right to express his views," said Christian Coalition spokeswoman Monica Hildebrandt. "The Interfaith Alliance doesn't seem to have a pro-active agenda of its own... Their sole objective is to criticize us. They're welcome to do that."
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