Press Release

Public Interest Groups Call for CIA Director to Resign

A coalition of public interest groups called for CIA Director John Brennan’s resignation Tuesday, citing abuses of power that include obstructing and spying on a Senate committee that was looking into the agency’s use of torture.

In a letter to President Obama, the groups said that Brennan’s belated apology and his referral of the matter to an internal CIA “accountability board” are not enough. The groups urged the president to request Brennan’s resignation.

The call for his resignation follows the CIA Office of the Inspector General (IG) finding that CIA employees had improperly accessed confidential Senate computer files, surreptitiously read Senate staffers’ emails, filed a false criminal referral of Senate staff and “demonstrated a lack of candor” in interviews with the IG.

The IG report confirmed allegations that Sen. Dianne Feinstein, chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, made against the CIA earlier this year. At the time, Brennan had publicly denied Feinstein’s charges.

The coalition letter to Obama said that since 9/11, the CIA has repeatedly tried to conceal and obstruct oversight of its use of torture.

“Director Brennan did not begin this pattern, but he has continued and reinforced it,” the groups said. “The ongoing misconduct of the CIA, both prior to Mr. Brennan and under his leadership, sends a message to CIA employees, and creates an impression to the public that it is an agency without limits.”

Follow the link to read the letter.

Organizations signing the letter:

Advocacy for Principled Action in Government

Appeal for Justice

Bill of Rights Defense Committee (BORDC)

Center for Media and Democracy

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington

Constitutional Alliance

Defending Dissent Foundation

Demand Progress

Freedom of the Press Foundation

Government Accountability Project

Just Foreign Policy

Liberty Coalition

Media Freedom Foundation/Project Censored

National Commission on Intelligence and Foreign Wars

PEN American Center

Public Citizen

Project On Government Oversight


Sunlight Foundation