(WASHINGTON) — John Brennan moved one step closer on Tuesday to being the next CIA director.
The Senate Intelligence Committee voted 12-3 to move Brennan’s nomination out of the committee Tuesday afternoon. Brennan, the current chief counterterrorism adviser to President Obama, must now face a full Senate vote for his nomination to be confirmed for his new job as head of the CIA.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has indicated that he’d like the full Senate to vote on Brennan at some point this week.
Prompting the move in the Senate Intelligence Committee, where the Brennan nomination had been held up for numerous days, was an agreement with the White House to provide the committee access to all Office of Legal Counsel opinions related to the targeted killing of Americans by drones.
“I am pleased the administration has made this information available,” Committee Chairwoman Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said in a statement on the release of the White House information on drones to the committee. “It is important for the committee to do its work and will pave the way for the confirmation of John Brennan to be CIA director.”
Brennan still faces an uphill climb in the full Senate where some Senate Republicans, like Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Kelly Ayotte R-N.H., have vowed to hold up his nomination until the administration answers questions on the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11 of last year.
“John and I are hell-bent on making sure the American people understand this debacle called Benghazi,” Graham said this weekend on CBS’ Face the Nation.
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David Chalian, CNN
Daniella Diaz and Jeff Zeleny, CNN
Nate Eaton, EastIdahoNews.com
Laura Koran, CNN