In her testimony last week, Ms. Haspel had vowed never to restart a detention and interrogation program and said she would obey current law. But she also refused to condemn the agency’s defunct torture program and insisted that it had been legal at the time.
Her letter, delivered to Mr. Warner along with her written responses to other questions posed by senators, struck a different tone. Still, Ms. Haspel did not acknowledge that she personally had played any role in the detention and interrogation program — details that remain classified. As the acting director of the C.I.A., she has the authority to declassify those facts, but she has refused to do so, to heavy criticism by some Democrats and human-rights advocates.
While two Republican senators, John McCain of Arizona and Rand Paul of Kentucky, have expressed opposition to her confirmation, two other Democrats, Senators Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Joe Donnelly of Indiana, have also said they will vote for her.
At the conclusion of last week’s hearing, Mr. Warner noted that John O. Brennan, who led the C.I.A. in the second term of the Obama administration, had during his 2013 confirmation process “quite explicitly repudiated” the agency’s interrogation program. He pushed her to make a clearer public statement — one he said on Tuesday he had now received.
Ms. Haspel’s repudiation of the program reinforced the obstacles to Mr. Trump’s campaign vow to bring back waterboarding and “a hell of a lot worse” because, as he then insisted, “torture works.” As president, he backed away from that idea early last year at the urging of advisers including Jim Mattis, the defense secretary, and Mike Pompeo, whose move to secretary of state from C.I.A. director prompted Ms. Haspel’s nomination.
Ms. Haspel’s written responses also briefly addressed other important issues that did not come up at her hearing. Asked about the Iran nuclear deal that Mr. Trump withdrew from last week, she said that Iran had continued to substantially meet its commitments. She also said she agreed with the intelligence community’s assessment that Russia interfered in the 2016 election and pledged to “fully cooperate” with the investigations into it, including by the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III.
But most of the written questions, like those in her hearing, addressed issues related to the C.I.A.’s defunct torture program and her role in it. Several addressed apparent discrepancies in her testimony.