There are 15 full-time members of the Senate Intelligence Committee — eight Republicans and seven Democrats — and the panel is considered to be one of the last bastions of bipartisanship on Capitol Hill.
The committee is led by Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Vice Chairman Mark R. Warner (D-Va.).
Burr is the son of a minister and played football at Wake Forest University. He spent 17 years selling lawn equipment before winning a House seat in 1994. Beyond his current perch, he’s known as a quirkier member, known for wearing loafers with no socks and owning a Volkswagen Thing that he parks prominently near the U.S. Capitol.
Warner is a Connecticut native who attended George Washington University and worked on Capitol Hill before becoming a multimillionaire technology executive and then launching his political career.
Burr became committee chairman in 2015 when Republicans seized control of the Senate. Warner became top Democrat on the panel this year when Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) dropped one slot in the pecking order so she could take the top Democratic seat on the Judiciary Committee. Democrats see the new assignment as a way to keep Warner — a former governor who has admitted to presidential aspirations — happy, and to help him fully embrace his senatorial role.
James E. Risch (Idaho): Risch is one of Trump’s biggest supporters on Capitol Hill and is among the Republicans especially concerned about ongoing leaks to the news media. In recent interviews, he’s called on the Justice Department to root out the “weasel” leaking the information. He’s served on the panel since 2009 — making him one of the longer-serving members.
Marco Rubio (Fla.): The former presidential candidate is among the Republicans willing to criticize Trump publicly. He’s been on the Intelligence Committee since 2011.
Susan Collins (Maine): On the committee since 2013, Collins is also among the president’s most vocal critics in regards to the Russia affair.
Roy Blunt (Mo.): A member of Senate GOP leadership, he’s among a handful of senators in both parties who pressured Burr to intensify the committee’s investigation of Russian meddling this year. During one particularly intense exchange on the Senate floor in February, Blunt and other senators told Burr that if the intelligence panel didn’t step up, other committees would fill the void. Blunt served on the committee during his first two years in the Senate (2011-2012) and rejoined the panel in 2015 after serving in the interim on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
James Lankford (Okla.): The Oklahoma senator joined the committee in 2015. He’s a staunch defender of the committee’s Russia probe, even in the face of criticism that it is complicating Trump’s presidency. He said he’s focused on how Russia’s meddling may have hampered the nation’s public institutions.
Tom Cotton (Ark.): A staunch supporter of Trump’s foreign policy, he joined the committee in 2015.
John Cornyn (Tex.): The second-ranking Republican senator, he’s also a Trump ally and far less willing to be critical of the president — other than to voice concern with how the investigations and Trump’s response distract from Republican legislative priorities.
Dianne Feinstein (Calif.): The former committee chairwoman is the only member who also sits on the Judiciary Committee, which is responsible for oversight of the Justice Department. She has called on Sessions to come before that committee as well.
Ron Wyden (Ore.): He’s one of the longest-serving committee members, on the panel since 2001. He’s also known as a fierce critic of the intelligence community.
Martin Heinrich (N.M.): An engineer by training, the New Mexico senator keeps a low profile but has been on the committee since he joined the Senate in 2012. Unlike some colleagues more interested in grandstanding, Heinrich usually uses his question time to extract actual information. He also regularly challenges witnesses for not being more forthcoming with information.
Angus King (Maine): The committee’s only independent senator has been totally uncompromising in promoting the committee’s probe.
Joe Manchin III (W.Va.): The moderate Democrat joined the committee this year.
Kamala D. Harris (Calif.): The former California attorney general is the only first-term senator on the committee and is often mentioned as a potential 2020 presidential candidate.
Regarding the committee’s Russia investigation, “I do become a bit impatient with the case, I do believe we need to pick it up,” she told the San Diego Union-Tribune this month.
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Read our 2016 Report Card for Sessions.
Sessions is shown as a purple triangle ▲ in our ideology-leadership chart below. Each dot is a member of the Senate positioned according to our liberal–conservative ideology score (left to right) and our leadership score (leaders are toward the top).
The chart is based on the bills Sessions has sponsored and cosponsored. See full analysis methodology.
Sessions was the primary sponsor of 9 bills that were enacted. The most recent include:
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We consider a bill enacted if one of the following is true: a) it is enacted itself, b) it has a companion bill in the other chamber (as identified by Congress) which was enacted, or c) if about one third or more of its provisions were incorporated into bills that were enacted (as determined by an automated text analysis, applicable beginning with bills in the 110th Congress).
Sessions sponsored bills primarily in these issue areas:
Health (68%)Immigration (11%)Economics and Public Finance (11%)International Affairs (11%)
Some of Sessions’s most recently sponsored bills include...
View All » | View Cosponsors »
|Sessions’s Vote||Vote Description|
|Nay||S. 612: WIIN Act|
Dec 10, 2016. Motion Agreed to 78/21.
|Nay||H.R. 5325: Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2017|
Sep 28, 2016. Bill Passed 72/26.
|Nay||S. 2012: Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015|
Apr 20, 2016. Bill Passed 85/12.
This week, the Senate began debate on the first major energy legislation to be considered since 2007. Introduced by Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), the bill -- S. 2012, the Energy Policy Modernization Act -- received an unlikely overwhelming bipartisan vote when it passed out of ...
|Yea||H.R. 22: Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act|
Dec 3, 2015. Conference Report Agreed to 83/16.
H.R 22, formerly the Hire More Heroes Act, has become the Senate’s vehicle for passage of the Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act or DRIVE Act (S. 1647). The DRIVE Act is a major bipartisan transportation bill that would authorize funding ...
|Yea||H.R. 22: Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act|
Jul 30, 2015. Bill Passed 65/34.
This vote turned H.R 22, originally the Hire More Heroes Act, into the Senate’s vehicle for passage of the Developing a Reliable and Innovative Vision for the Economy Act or DRIVE Act (S. 1647), a major bipartisan transportation bill, and the Export-Import Bank Reform and ...
|Not Voting||H.R. 5771 (113th): Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014|
Dec 16, 2014. Bill Passed 76/16.
|Nay||H.J.Res. 124 (113th): Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2015|
Sep 18, 2014. Joint Resolution Passed 78/22.
|Nay||H.R. 3304 (113th): National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014|
Dec 19, 2013. Motion Agreed to 84/15.
|Nay||H.R. 4853 (111th): Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010|
Dec 15, 2010. Motion Agreed to 81/19.
The Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010 (Pub.L. 111–312, H.R. 4853, 124 Stat. 3296, enacted December 17, 2010), also known as the 2010 Tax Relief Act, was passed by the United States Congress on December 16, 2010, and signed into ...
|Yea||On the Nomination PN177: Gen. George W. Casey, Jr., in the Army, to be General|
Feb 8, 2007. Nomination Confirmed 83/14.
From Jan 1997 to Feb 2017, Sessions missed 175 of 6,295 roll call votes, which is 2.8%. This is worse than the median of 1.4% among the lifetime records of senators serving in Feb 2017. The chart below reports missed votes over time.
Show the numbers...
|Time Period||Votes Eligible||Missed Votes||Percent||Percentile|
The information on this page is originally sourced from a variety of materials, including:
Jefferson “Jeff” Sessions is pronounced:
The letters stand for sounds according to the following table:
Capital letters indicate a stressed syllable.