With U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, R-NC, stepping down after revelations that he sold stocks during the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is taking over as acting chairman of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced on Monday that he had tapped Rubio to lead the committee for the time being.
“I am glad to announce that Senator Marco Rubio has accepted my invitation to serve as acting chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence,” McConnell said. “The senior senator for Florida is a talented and experienced Senate leader with expertise in foreign affairs and national security matters. Senator Rubio was the natural choice for this temporary assignment on the basis of accumulated committee service. His proven leadership on pertinent issues only made the decision easier.
“Senator Rubio has spent a decade as a leading member on the Intelligence and Foreign Relations Committees. His care for our nation’s security, advocacy for our values and interests, and vigilance toward threats have earned a national reputation. On subjects ranging from China and Russia to Iran and North Korea to tyranny and unrest in our own hemisphere, Senator Rubio has been on the case for years,” McConnell continued. “By and large, our nation’s intelligence professionals are dedicated, hard-working men and women who counter foreign threats and keep Americans safe. They deserve all the resources and support Congress can provide. But as recent years have made painfully clear with respect to federal law enforcement, we also need proactive leadership from within and thorough oversight from Congress to keep partisan bias and political interference out of these sensitive activities.
“I appreciate the acting chairman’s commitment to lead on all these fronts during this temporary assignment — to help ensure the intelligence community stays ahead of our adversaries, out of politics, and out of the press,” he said in conclusion.
“I am grateful to Leader McConnell for his confidence in me to lead the Senate Intelligence Committee during Senator Burr’s absence from the chairmanship,” Rubio said. “The committee has long been one that conducts its work seriously, and I look forward to continuing that tradition.”
First elected in 2010, Rubio leads the U.S. Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee.
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