Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 3, 2015

Clapper Apologizes for ‘Erroneous’ Testimony to Congress

The director of national intelligence has apologized in writing for not telling the truth to Congress about the intelligence community’s collection of massive amounts of data on millions of Americans — a falsehood exposed publicly by Edward Snowden.

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence released the letter Tuesday from Director James R. Clapper Jr., dated June 21 to Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and apologizing for providing false testimony to a question from Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., at a March panel hearing about the extent of data collection on Americans.

Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee in March. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Clapper testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee in March. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“My response was clearly erroneous — for which I apologize,” Clapper wrote in the letter, which was first quoted by The Washington Post.

His false answer was inadvertent, he said, and he noted his nearly 50 years in government service.

“Mistakes will happen, and when I make one, I correct it,” he wrote.

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  1. mississippian

    July 2, 2013
    6:01 p.m.

    He only correct the “mistake” because he was caught. How do we hold people accountable for lying to Congress when we let top administration officials off the hook?

  2. Patrick Mumford

    July 2, 2013
    6:59 p.m.

    More like an apology for getting caught. There is no honesty or integrity in the Obama administration.

  3. Mojojojo

    July 3, 2013
    6:25 a.m.

    It clearly *wasn’t* erroneous. Why is it even legal for him to lie to a senator?

    This is a lot worse than the IRS non-scandal—if Clapper weren’t using the lie to kill Muslims, “neutral” conservative investigators would be all over this. Yet there they are, too busy off dancing for rich donors in their districts…

  4. Rumionemore

    July 3, 2013
    8:55 a.m.

    Clapper is the poster child for all that seems to be frighteningly amiss in our entire “security complex.” Taxpayer dollars disappear at an astounding rate on “secret” projects and programs for which no one seems accountable – even to one another.

    When the Senate INTEL Committee rushed David Petraeus to the CIA Director’s job, apparently without vetting him, it made me question how many other high-level security personnel are simply passed on up to highly responsible positions because politicians believe they can manipulate these people.

  5. Martin Scheinberg

    July 3, 2013
    11:42 a.m.

    Get a thesaurus. Erroneous? Fabricate? How about an out and out liar?

  6. GNH

    July 3, 2013
    12:06 p.m.

    Boy, that’s rich… How many of those reading this can expect the same treatment; lie to Congress, then apologize in writing… all good. Bull.

    Double standards are part of the cancer killing this country. Clapper needs to be treated like any other citizen that lies under oath. Punish the liar.

  7. Richard McCabe

    July 3, 2013
    12:37 p.m.

    That type of mistake is called perjury. Most people would go to jail for that and Clapper should also.

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