Schumer calls Rahm about Freeman


Greg Sargent at The Plum Line reports that Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has joined other members of Congress in expressing his concerns about Charles "Chas" Freeman, although he did it privately:

Senator Charles Schumer has privately expressed concerns directly to White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel about Chas Freeman, the Obama administration’s pick to head the group that prepares some of the intel community’s most politically sensitive assessments, a person familiar with their conversation tells me.

Schumer’s concerns could create serious problems for Freeman, since Schumer is a Democrat and a high-profile voice on Israel, and could give cover for other Democrats to come out and vocally raise questions about the appointment.

The source familiar with Schumer’s conversation with Rahm tells me the New York Senator was concerned about Freeman’s positions on Israel.

“It was in a phone call to Rahm,” the source says, adding that Chuck expressed reservations about Freeman’s positions on Israel. “It was about Freeman’s positions on the Middle East.”

So far, the only comment the White House has made on the National Intelligence Council chair appointment, which was made by Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair and not the president, is Robert Gibbs’ statement on Tuesday that he hadn’t read anything about concerns with Freeman. The former ambassador to Saudi Arabia also has not yet been vetted by the White House.

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