CIA's Panetta Woos Congress

The CIA director has been working hard to improve relations with Congress.

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By Paul Bedard, Washington Whispers

Despite recent tiffs, the CIA sees its relationship with Congress improving. Sure, the agency and Capitol Hill, especially House Democrats, have clashed over Bush-era antiterrorism techniques. But CIA Director Leon Panetta "has been working very hard," says one intelligence insider, to change the tone. The agency has brought Hill aides into its ranks and has been involved in an unusually high level of outreach to Capitol Hill, including briefing members and staff about 500 times already this year. "Despite what you sometimes hear, there is, in fact, a steady flow of information from the CIA to the Hill," says the insider. "That's how it should be."

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