Richard M Burr

Pompeo Confirms Mueller Interview
Secretary of state nominee testified before Senate Foreign Relations panel

CIA Director Mike Pompeo, right, President Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of State, greets Sen. Richard M. Burr, R-N.C., during his confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo told senators at his confirmation hearing Thursday he has been questioned by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III in his investigation into connections between the Trump campaign and Russian operatives.

Specifically, Mueller questioned the current CIA chief on a West Wing conversation last March with President Donald Trump and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats in which the president reportedly asked Coats to get then-FBI head James B. Comey to drop his investigation into  former national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Burr Says States Should Determine Age Limits on Guns
But says there are points of agreements on gun laws in Congress

Sen.  Richard Burr, R-N.C., right, said he is open to some gun measures but thinks age restrictions should be left to states. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Sen. Richard Burr said there are points of “common agreement” in Congress on gun laws, but that states should determine age restrictions on buying weapons.

Speaking to CBS 17 in Wilson, the North Carolina Republican responded to questions about tighter gun legislation in the wake of the shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, in February.

Lawmakers From High-Export Areas Mum on China Tariffs
White House blames Beijing as one pork state Dem says 'Trump isn’t cutting it'

U.S. and Chinese flags during military leaders' meetings in 2014. Four years later, the two economic giants are exchanging import tariffs amid lawmakers' worries about a trade war. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Mikki L. Sprenkle via Wikimedia Commons)

Lawmakers in states and districts most likely to be affected by the Chinese tariffs on an array of American products from pork to wine to fruits and nuts were noticeably mum Monday on Beijing’s retaliation against the Trump administration’s trade actions.

The Chinese government was unhappy when President Donald Trump decided to impose import penalties of 25 percent on most steel and 10 percent on aluminum coming into the United States. Beijing hit back Monday with $3 billion worth of tariffs on nearly 130 American goods — but members had very little to say about the latest skirmish in the trade brouhaha.

No Snow Day on Capitol Hill Wednesday
Floor votes and hearings are still expected

A worker clears the sidewalks on the East Front of the Capitol in March 2009. Employees of the office of the Architect of the Capitol also will likely be hard at work to keep the Capitol open for business on Wednesday. (CQ Roll Call file photo)

Executive agencies might close Wednesday for the snowstorm that’s bearing down on Washington, but it should be closer to business-as-usual on Capitol Hill.

The cold rain and expected changeover to snow is arriving when lawmakers are already safely in the nation’s capital, so the most usual reason to cancel business — flight delays — won’t be an issue.

Senate Intel Unveils First Findings on Russia Election Meddling
Focus Tuesday was on election infrastructure security

Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr, R-N.C., left, and Vice Chairman Mark Warner, D-Va., lead a news conference in the Capitol on Tuesday to preview the committee’s findings on threats to election infrastructure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s recommendations for how to secure U.S. election systems from intrusion efforts by the Russians and others aren’t exactly earth-shattering.

But that’s not to say they aren’t important.

Trump Touts Putin Get-Together as Senators Warn of Electoral Threat
U.S. president doesn't mention Kremlin's election meddling as possible topic

President Donald Trump announced Tuesday he hopes to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin soon to discuss a list of issues, but he did not mention Russia’s election meddling. (\Adam Berry/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump said Tuesday he likely will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin soon to discuss a range of issues — but the Kremlin’s efforts to tinker with U.S. elections did not make his list of possible topics, even as Republican and Democratic senators urged vigilance against Russian attacks. 

Trump said that summit likely would occur “in the not too distant future.” Among the topics: an arms race the American president said is “is getting out of control.”

Tillerson Termination Adds New Priorities to Senate Calendar
Weeks in April and May could be consumed by State, CIA nominations

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will need to clear some floor time for the nominations of Mike Pompeo to lead the State Department and Gina Haspel to run the CIA. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Whatever the Senate might have wanted to focus on in April and May will now have to compete for time with a new priority thrust upon it by President Donald Trump.

Once senators got past the initial shock of Trump’s Twitter announcement Tuesday that he was ousting Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, they quickly moved toward paving the way to debate and confirm CIA Director Mike Pompeo as Tillerson’s successor, as well as Deputy CIA Director Gina Haspel to lead that agency.

Not Even Richard Burr’s Son Could Avoid Security Clearance Review Backlog
Intelligence chairman made point during oversight hearing on clearance process

Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr said his own son faced security clearance review delays. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr told a story at Wednesday’s hearing about the security clearance process of a 22 year-old seeking employment with the Department of Defense roughly a decade ago.

It took that young man almost a year to get through the clearance hurdles. He was the North Carolina Republican’s son.

North Carolina Delegation on Swapping Out a White Supremacist for Billy Graham
Statue of Charles Aycock would come down to put Graham up following his death on Wednesday

Tourists pass by the statue of Charles Brantley Aycock in the Crypt of the U.S. Capitol. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call file photo)

When the Rev. Billy Graham died last week at the age of 99, it set in motion a plan to memorialize him in the U.S. Capitol — and to kick out a white supremacist.

Graham will briefly lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda. But his likeness could endure in the building for much longer than that.

Senate Intel Leaders Look for Better Security Before 2018 Primaries
DNI testifies about importance of public information on Russian election meddling

FBI Director Christopher Wray, left, shakes hands with Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard M. Burr before a Tuesday hearing. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee hope to make their findings public on improving election security before primary contests get underway.

That’s what panel Chairman Richard M. Burr, a North Carolina Republican, and Vice Chairman Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat, said Tuesday in wrapping up the open portion of the annual hearing on “Worldwide Threats.”