Richard M Burr

FBI Details Intelligence Staffer Probe Ahead of Sentencing
Sentencing hearing for James Wolfe scheduled on Dec. 20

James Wolfe, a former Senate Intelligence Committee aide, leaves the FBI’s Washington Field Office after being booked on June 11. A sentencing hearing for Wolfe is scheduled for Dec. 20.  (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The FBI faced a dilemma and had to take “extraordinary” actions when it realized in 2017 that the former director of security for the Senate Intelligence Committee appeared compromised in his role safeguarding information and had a clandestine relationship with a national security journalist.

Had James Wolfe been an executive branch employee, the FBI would have notified intelligence agencies if a Top Secret clearance holder was compromised so they could protect national security, federal prosecutors wrote in a court filing Tuesday.

Senators Urge No Prison Time for Intelligence Committee Aide Who Lied to FBI
Prosecutors, on other hand, recommend two years in prison for James Wolfe

Senators urged leniency for former Senate Intelligence Committee James Wolfe, who lied to the FBI. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

While federal prosecutors on Tuesday recommended a two-year prison sentence for James Wolfe, a former director of security for the Senate Intelligence Committee who pleaded guilty in October to a charge he lied to the FBI about his contacts with journalists, his former bosses urged the judge to show mercy. 

A letter to the judge from current committee Chairman Richard Burr of North Carolina, top Democrat Mark Warner of Virginia, and former chairwoman Dianne Feinstein of California urged no prison time for Wolfe, who was director of security for nearly three decades.

Richard Burr: ‘If You Lie to Us, We’re Going to Go After You’
Senate Intelligence chairman alludes to Mueller plea agreement with Michael Cohen

Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr, right, appeared with Vice Chairman Mark Warner on Friday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr said that Thursday’s guilty plea by Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former attorney, should be seen as a clear warning.

“It’s a loud message to everybody that is interviewed by our committee, regardless of where that prosecution comes from: If you lie to us, we’re going to go after you,” Burr said Friday. “Our mandate is at the end of this to get as close to the clear truth as we possibly can, and we can’t do it on conjecture. We’ve got to do it on facts.”

Racial Concerns Fuel Opposition to Judicial Nominee
Thomas Farr under scrutiny for issues traced back to North Carolina politics

Sens. Richard M. Burr, R-N.C., right, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C., support the nomination of Thomas Farr to the federal bench, but Farr’s work in the Tar Heel State on voting issues has attracted opposition. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

To grasp how the long partisan war over the Senate’s judicial confirmation process shapes the nation’s legal landscape, look no further than this week’s floor vote on Thomas Farr to sit on a federal district court in North Carolina.

If confirmed — something that appears uncertain in a narrowly divided Senate — Farr would fill the oldest judicial vacancy in the country in a part of North Carolina with a significant black population. The Eastern District of North Carolina seat has been open for nearly 13 years — and three presidents — because of the Tar Heel State’s contentious politics and the way senators have used traditions to block nominees.

The Last of the Gingrich Revolutionaries
Come January, the GOP class of 1994 could be down to seven

From left, Reps. Mac Thornberry of Texas, Steve Chabot of Ohio and Walter B. Jones of North Carolina are among the few remaining members of the Class of 1994 still serving in Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photos)

It was nearly 24 years ago that Republicans swept into power in stunning fashion, ending 40 years of Democratic rule in the House.

But those 73 new Republicans who came to the House and 11 who came to the Senate on the 1994 wave engineered by Georgia Republican Newt Gingrich and his “Contract with America” have now dwindled down to a handful, and after this election only seven will likely be left in Congress.

When Sen. Mark Warner Stuffed Shrimp in His Pockets
Take Five: Warner shares earliest Senate memories, says he and Tim Kaine are ‘yin and yang’

Sen. Mark Warner's, D-Va., mantra for graduation speeches is “Be Concise. And be seated.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

One of the first times Mark Warner commuted to the Senate, he wore a green polyester suit.

He had to wring it out after riding his bike from George Washington University. On the upside, it had pretty spacious pockets — large enough for some shrimp.

Trump Signs Election Meddling Order, But No Mention of Russia
White House says they will keep talking to lawmakers as Senate bill lingers

Voting signs at One Judiciary Square in Washington in 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump signed an executive order aimed at punishing foreign actors that interfere with U.S. elections, senior administration officials said Wednesday.

National security adviser John Bolton said Trump and his team decided to move ahead with the order to show he has “taken control” of efforts to prevent, stop and punish election meddling like that conducted by Russia in 2016. Though there is a bipartisan Senate bill focused on combating meddling, the administration moved the order now to put a “mechanism” in place that marshals all federal efforts under Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats.

Richard Burr Praises Expected Trump Order on Election Interference
Confirms Intelligence Committee report on Russian meddling won’t come before November

Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee seemed to confirm Wednesday the existence of a forthcoming executive order to counter efforts of Russia and other foreign adversaries to interfere in U.S. elections.

Sen. Richard M. Burr pointed to the sanctions action during an interview on Fox News.

Senate Intel Won’t Have Russia Report By Midterms, Top Democrat Says
Committee still wants to speak with Cohen, Papadopoulos

Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., right, and Vice Chairman Mark Warner, D-Va., have managed to keep Senate Intelligence working on a bipartisan basis as they probe Russia 2016 election interference. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Senate Intelligence Committee is unlikely to release its final report on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election until after the midterms this November, Vice Chairman Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the committee, said.

Warner and his colleagues are still wending their way down a list of people they’d like to interview, he said, including Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos, who was sentenced to 14 days in prison last week for lying to the FBI about his contacts with the Russians while he was working on the campaign.

Photos of the Week: Back on the Hill Again
The week of Sept. 3 as captured by Roll Call’s photographers

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh continued his testimony on Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

The week began with a solemn yet powerful tribute to Sen. John McCain at the Washington National Cathedral on Saturday before he was laid to rest on Sunday in Maryland at the Naval Academy.

On Tuesday, both chambers were back on the Hill and focus turned in the Senate to the three-day-long hearing for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, who sat for hours and hours of questioning on Wednesday and Thursday. The protests for this nominee were plentiful.