Source: James Clapper tapped as intelligence chief

Obama's choice, a retired Air Force general and Pentagon official, has critics in Congress

Published June 4, 2010 9:09PM (EDT)

A person familiar with the situation says President Barack Obama plans to nominate Pentagon official James Clapper to be his next intelligence chief despite objections from Capitol Hill.

Clapper, a retired Air Force general, is the Pentagon's top intelligence official. He's expected to be nominated in a Rose Garden ceremony Saturday morning.

If confirmed, Clapper would replace retired Adm. Dennis Blair, who resigned after frequent clashes with the White House. But Clapper's combative sparring during hearings has made him an unpopular choice with some in Congress. His critics also question whether he will be able to counter Obama's intelligence inner circle at the NSC and CIA.

The person who revealed Obama's choice would speak only on condition of anonymity ahead of the expected announcement.

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