IssuesSenate Confirms Rep. John Ratcliffe to be New National Intelligence Director

John Ratcliffe, a U.S. Representative from a district in the northeastern corner of Texas, was confirmed to be the next Director of National Intelligence by the Senate.
May 21, 2020
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In a 49-44 vote, the Senate confirmed President Trump’s nomination of Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX-04) to the position of Director of National Intelligence (DNI).

Ratcliffe was first nominated for the position by the president when the former intelligence director, Dan Coats, stepped down from the position at the end of July 2019.

Several leaders in Congress from Texas, including Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX) and Ted Cruz (R-TX), voiced their support for Ratcliffe’s nomination.

However, Trump withdrew the nomination after several lawmakers questioned Ratcliffe’s qualifications for the position and his partisan leanings.

In the interim, two acting DNIs were appointed by Trump: Joseph Maguire from August 16 to February 20, and then U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell from February 20 to the present.

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In February, Trump once again nominated Ratcliffe for the position.

“I’ve known John personally for ten years, and I’m proud to support his nomination,” said Cornyn, introducing Ratcliffe at the committee hearing on his nomination. “I do believe that as a former U.S. Attorney, and as a current member of the House Intelligence Committee, he does understand the vast threats that our country is facing and the challenges that lie ahead.”

Prior to his election to Congress in 2014, Ratcliffe served as the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas under the U.S. Department of Justice.

Recently, Ratcliffe has abstained from voting on major legislation, including the Heroes Act and the FISA reauthorization bill.

As the new DNI, Ratcliffe will oversee the 16 agencies of the U.S. intelligence community, including the Central Intelligence Agency and the Intelligence Branch of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Ratcliffe will also serve as Trump’s intelligence advisor on the National Security Council.

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Daniel Friend

Daniel Friend

Daniel Friend is a reporter for The Texan. While recently finishing his degree in Political Science from Azusa Pacific University, he also interned in the U.S. Senate and co-authored a book on C. S. Lewis’s science fiction trilogy. In his spare time, he might be reading up on Dostoevsky or attempting to write a novel.