Vice President Dick Cheney's daughter Liz said Tuesday she doesn't believe her father did anything wrong in connection with a secret CIA operation that officials have said was designed to capture and kill al-Qaida figures.
At the same time, Liz Cheney accused House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and congressional Democrats of seeking to politicize lingering arguments over how the Bush administration conducted the war against terrorism in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.
Asked directly on MSNBC whether her father directed the CIA not to keep Congress fully informed about the secret program, Cheney said, "This is a classified program and he doesn't talk about classified programs."
An official with direct knowledge of the program had said earlier that CIA Director Leon Panetta, according to notes he'd been given in the early months of the program, Cheney had told the CIA not to inform Congress of the specifics of the effort. Panetta canceled the program on June 23. Officials have said the program was aimed at going after officials of the terrorist network individually rather than through air attacks in an effort to limit civilian casualties.
Liz Cheney, a former principal deputy secretary of state for Mideast affairs during George W. Bush's presidency, is helping her father write his memoirs. She aggressively defended him in Tuesday's nationally broadcast interview while declining to say point-blank whether he had violated any law or rule.