At Ms Haines’ hearing, she promised to take a non-partisan approach to intelligence gathering. Although she did not mention her name, Mr Trump’s current Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, she has made it clear that she will take a different approach. Democrats have accused Mr. Ratcliffe of giving political direction to the information he presents to the White House and acting more like a partisan aide than a non-political official with various declassifications and publication of documents intended to help Mr. Trump.
“One of the first things I would like to do is send a clear message to the intelligence community that we are supposed to produce non-political and unvarnished intelligence to the president-elect, to his senior advisers,” Haines told the Senator Angus King. , independent from Maine. “The president himself expects this and will expect the intelligence community to provide information whether he wants to hear it or not.
She was also asked several questions about far-right groups and she pledged to help the FBI and examine attempts by foreign governments to influence extremist organizations in the United States.
Lawmakers told her about China and how much priority it would place on improving intelligence gathering and counterintelligence, but also whether it supports an aggressive stance by the Biden administration.
“China is challenging our security, our prosperity, our values across a range of issues and I support an aggressive stance,” Haines said. “This is where we are now and the one that is more assertive than where we were in the Obama-Biden administration.”
Republican and Democratic senators pushed Ms. Haines on the issue. Senator Mark Warner, Democrat from Virginia, who is on the verge of becoming chairman of the intelligence committee, said he was part of an old bipartisan consensus that wrongly concluded that more Beijing was part of “the order. global ”, the more it would follow the international. standards. Now, he has expressed concern about China’s efforts to influence American policymakers, strengthen its military, dominate new technologies, steal intellectual property, and oppress its own people.
In response, Ms Haines said intelligence agencies should focus more on China. While the administration should try to work with China on issues like climate change, in the intelligence world, Beijing was not a partner.