If confirmed, Haspel would be the first woman to lead the Central Intelligence Agency.
Both Donnelly and Manchin - who serves on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that must approve Haspel's nomination before Donnelly and the rest of the chamber confirms her - face hard midterm fights this year in states that voted for Trump in 2016.
On today's show, Esty Dinur looks at Gina Haspel, the controversial nominee to become the permanent Director of the Central Intelligence Agency who had her confirmation hearing this week, and who has faced intense criticism over her involvement in torture at a Central Intelligence Agency black site in Thailand in 2002. In her testimony, Haspel defended the use of torture under her watch, saying the decision was necessary in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks.
"Torture is contrary to America's principles and fundamentally undercuts our moral authority on human rights. A lot of people try to call it that, but it wasn't deemed torture at the time", Cheney said.
Haspel has said that as CIA head she would not allow her agency to engage in the interrogation tactics that have been put off the table for their harshness, even if ordered to do so. "Ms. Haspel is eminently qualified, she is widely esteemed, and she is absolutely the right person at the right moment for this position".
She has broad, but not unanimous support, from Republicans in the Senate. Donnelly announced that he will be voting to confirm Haspel after a " tough, frank, and extensive discussion".
Donnelly is the second Democrat to endorse Haspel's nomination, joining Sen. "I urge the Senate to send a clear message to the world by rejecting Acting Director Haspel's nomination - and showing that we will never compromise on the values that make our nation great". But, any potential damage done by this lack of support for could be negated by Democratic Sen.