Cong. Comments on Issues

The Washington Post reported that two senior Bush administration officials revealed to the news media that the wife of former Ambassador Joseph Wilson is a CIA operative.

Wilson claims it was done to discredit him after he criticized the President.

Pickering said Monday the allegation should be fully investigated. He said congressional hearings might be appropriate at some point, if a probe does not either discredit the report or turn up the guilty party or parties.

The CIA has asked the Department of Justice to lead the probe into the source of the leak.

In the meantime, a vote is expected this week in the U.S. Senate on the President's request for $87 billion to pay for post-war expenses in Iraq.

While some have criticized it, Pickering, a Republican, compared what the U.S. is doing and plans to do in Iraq to the way it helped rebuild Europe after World War Two. He said that role created new partners in fighting Communism.

The House won't get to consider the funding request until next week at the earliest.

And a vote on the appeals court nomination of Judge Charles Pickering by the Senate Judiciary Committee was delayed last week. His son said again Monday that his father has an exemplary record that deserves a chance to be considered by the full Senate.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.