NC Policy Watch Director Rob Schofield issued a more or less complete evisceration of Sen. Richard Burr last week, calling him “a classic, inoffensive, modern-day American politician” and a “right-of-center weathervane” who “stakes out enough ultra-conservative positions to keep far-right challengers at bay, mostly avoids embracing the extremists on the fringe and will, on rare occasion, do the right thing on a tiny handful of issues.”
This evaluation came on April 18, a few hours after the Mueller report revealed that our senior senator briefed the White House on the details of Mueller’s investigation before it came out,, which may be illegal. More than that, he tipped the intelligence committee’s hand on the Senate investigation in Russian election meddling, of which Burr himself was in charge.
We remind you that Burr is also ranking chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee. It also seems germane that Burr announced in July 2016 — just a few months before winning re-election — that he would not seek a fourth term in the Senate.
And Burr joined the Trump campaign as an advisor shortly after he was briefed as intel chair on the FBI investigation into the campaign.
It would be one thing if Burr simply checked out. But it’s quite another for him to be tipping off the subject of Senate and federal investigations. That is an abdication of his duty as a US senator, who must take the same oath as the president to “defend the Constitution of the United States from enemies both foreign and domestic.”
Burr seems as unconcerned about the responsibilities of his office as he does about the fact — established by the Mueller report — that Russian agents meddled in the 2016 US election, and they got the outcome they wanted.
And his defense of his possibly treasonous action — that he doesn’t remember the conversation with Trump — is a steaming pile of crap. Either he’s lying, which is what any reasonable politician would do in his situation, or even worse: He’s telling the truth. That would mean that, he’s capable of breaching all sorts of national security protocol without ever remembering he did so. It’s like Dory in Finding Nemo, except she knows our country’s greatest secrets.
In either case, we’ve had enough of Richard Burr.
So we’re joining Politics NC, the WRAL editorial board and everybody else who cares about our state and our country in insisting that Sen. Burr hand in his resignation now instead of making us wait until 2022 to replace him. Decency demands it. As do the rules of the US Senate.