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Kit Bond Continues Assault over Terror Probe, Wants Brennan Fired

Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.), the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is continuing his battle with the White House over how the administration has handled the Christmas Day terror attack attempt, right from when Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab got off the plane.

In an interview with National Review Online, Bond called for John Brennan, President Obama's top counterterrorism adviser, to be fired, saying he is no longer "credible" and that a "drastic change in policy" is needed.

Bond in part was reacting to an op-ed Brennan wrote in USA Today yesterday which slammed critics of the administration's actions following the failed terror attack. Brennan said that such critics were "misrepresenting the facts to score political points, instead of coming together to keep us safe."

"Politically motivated criticism and unfounded fear-mongering only serve the goals of al-Qaeda. Terrorists are not 100-feet tall," he added.

Bond, who has been one of the most vocal critics, fired back to National Review by calling the op-ed "baffling" and saying that Brennan himself "needs to go."

He slammed what he called the "political mess at the White House" that "puts our country at risk."

"The national-security team has become a bench of political spokespeople," he said. "It doesn't speak well of the individuals, but let's remember that these continued attacks must be coming from the top, from the president himself, to try and deflect the mistakes they made in giving Miranda rights to the Christmas Day bomber."

The White House has countered to Bond's attack by calling it "pathetic."

"Through his pathetic attack on a counter-terrorism professional like John Brennan who has spent his lifetime protecting this country under multiple Administrations, Senator Bond sinks to new depths in his efforts to put politics over our national security," White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said in a statement given to Greg Sargent of The Plum Line blog.

Bond continued his criticism in an interview on MSNBC this morning, though he wasn't as specific in calling for Brennan's resignation.

"The most important thing is to change the policy," Bond said. "The people who have implemented that policy probably should be changed too."

The battle between the White House and Republicans such as Bond over the Christmas Day terror attempt investigation is not likely to go away anytime soon, and both sides today also have some new firepower in the form of a poll from Quinnipiac University.

In the Quinnipiac poll, Americans say 9/11 terrorism suspects should be tried in military courts rather than in civilian courts by 59 to 35 percent and say 68 to 25 percent that terrorism suspects should not receive all of the protections afforded by a civilian trial. That would help the Republicans who have been criticizing administration plans to hold trials for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and others in civilian courts within the U.S.

But on the flip side, the poll also found that Americans approve 52 - 42 percent of the FBI's advice to the suspect of his right to remain silent. That decision to "Mirandize" Abdulmutallab has been one of the most blistering criticisms from Bond and others.