UPDATE: More commentary from reader Zappatero here.
In the nicest possible terms, as MSNBC reports:
Senate Intelligence Committee member Sen. Mark Udall, D- Colo., said Tuesday that John Brennan’s future as head of the Central Intelligence Agency is in doubt after committee chairman Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D- Calif., accused the agency of spying on the committee and trying to interfere with its work.
“The CIA has an important role to play, but if the public doesn’t trust the CIA, if the Senate overseers don’t trust the CIA, I don’t know how Director Brennan can continue to lead the agency,” Udall said on MSNBC.
This latest conflict between the Senate Intelligence Committee and the Central Intelligence Agency, due to the potentially criminal nature of the CIA's actions and the underlying issue of detention and interrogation policy, risks driving a major wedge between Senate Democrats and the Obama administration. As we said yesterday, the normally hawkish Sen. Dianne Feinstein standing side-by-side with longtime critic Sen. Mark Udall in opposition to the administration on a national security matter shouldn't be taken likely.
It remains to be seen how this might affect other conflicts between the administration and Sen. Udall, like his opposition to National Security Agency domestic surveillance programs, but it seems likely to reinforce Udall's position that a rollback of the sweeping law enforcement authority given to the federal government after 9/11 is needed.