On Jan. 9, 2009, then-President-elect Barack Obama formally announced his appointment of retired Navy Adm. Dennis C. Blair to serve as director of National Intelligence.
That appointment was unanimously approved by the Senate about a week after Obama's inauguration. That made Blair the country's third director of National Intelligence, or DNI, a position created by Congress based on the recommendation of the 9/11 Commission.
As DNI, Blair is the leader of the 16 intelligence agencies that make up the intelligence community. He is also the principal adviser to the president, the National Security Council and the Homeland Security Council for intelligence matters related to national security. And lastly, he oversees the intelligence budget.
During his confirmation hearing, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., highlighted some of his qualifications for the job: onetime commander in chief of the United States Pacific Command; two stints in the White House, first as a fellow, then on the National Security Council staff; two years at the CIA as the associate director for military support; and an appointment as the director of the Joint Staff in 1996.
But no mention was ever made about giving Blair -- or any future DNI -- a fixed term. Nor has there been since. We rate this promise Stalled.