Sen. Wyden says, despite denial, CIA director knew agency spied on Senate

Sen. Ron Wyden said the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence can't provide proper oversight of the CIA if the agency secretly spies on its senators.
Sen. Ron Wyden said the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence can't provide proper oversight of the CIA if the agency secretly spies on its senators.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said CIA Director John Brennan knew his agency was spying on the Senate despite denying this at a Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) hearing in 2013.

Brennan refused to publicly acknowledge his wrongdoing even after the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) release of the draft of an apology letter Brennan wrote, but never sent, to leaders of the SSCI. In the letter he admitted the CIA spied on the Senate, Wyden, a member of the committee, said in an interview with HBO's “Vice.”  

“We can't do vigorous oversight over the agency if the agency we're supposed to be overseeing is in fact secretly searching our files,” he said.

The conflict between the SSCI and the CIA began when former Committee Chairwoman Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) accused the CIA of spying on congressional overseers during the committee's investigation into the spy agency's interrogation techniques. 

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