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Request to Senator Burr for Senate Intelligence Committee Updates

Two of our Indivisible AVL members recently reached out to Senator Richard Burr to ask him to provide regular and frequent updates about the progress of the committee’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2017 Presidential Election.

They met with staff in Senator Burr’s Asheville office and, after reading the following memo together, asked that it be passed on to Senator Burr. This is such an important  issue, and their memo is so strong, that we wanted to share the text of it in full:

“RE: Investigation of Russian Interference in U. S. Elections/Senate Intelligence Committee

“We applaud the Senate and the Senate Intelligence Committee for focusing its efforts on the interference of the 2016 U.S. election by the Russian government. The spirit of bipartisanship evidenced by Senators Burr and Warner suggests that the hearings will be focused on gathering and assessing evidence for the purpose of determining how our electoral system can be protected from further attacks.

“Fully understanding that the process of uncovering the truth can often take time, we nonetheless urge Senator Burr to use his chairmanship to create a sense of urgency so that the committee can, if necessary, make recommendations in order to prevent further foreign interference. In 2018 there is another round of elections, and it is imperative that if there is a need for Congressional action, that proposals from the Intelligence Committee be made well in advance of these elections. When one considers the sometimes lengthy process of passing legislation through the House and the Senate, Senator Burr’s committee must move carefully but rapidly in order to safeguard the electoral process.

“Moreover, the seriousness of this issue is so acute that the public must be kept informed on a regular basis. We know that the Senate deals with weighty issues, but we are talking about an actual threat to democracy, the very foundation of our government. If foreign governments can manipulate the results of our elections, then the will of the American people is being subverted. This simply cannot happen. Not only do we need to understand the degree to which the Russian government interfered in the democratic process, we need to anticipate in what other ways a foreign government can influence the outcomes of future elections in the United States. Again, we are talking about the very foundation of democracy.

“Our Request: Because this issue impacts the very basis of democracy, we ask that Senator Burr provide regular and frequent updates via his website and public pronouncements to the press about the progress of the committee. In this toxic political environment of partisanship, it is imperative that Senator Burr engenders broad confidence in the work of his committee. He can do this by updating the American people on a regular basis about the progress of the committee. This public relations effort is imperative to ensure the on-going credibility of the committee’s work. We clearly understand that the Senator cannot reveal a great deal of information uncovered because of national security interests, but he can tell the American people the general progress the committee is making and the schedule moving forward.”

Posted by the US Congress Watch Team.