Sep 11, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Warner says intelligence committee briefing on Trump docs not yet a sure thing

MArk Warner

Sen. Mark Warner. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Senate Intelligence Chair Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) said Sunday he's unsure when Congress will get a briefing from the intelligence community on the damages from classified documents that were allegedly mishandled by former President Trump.

Driving the news: A federal judge last week accepted Trump's request for a special master to review evidence seized by the FBI in the search of Mar-a-Lago for personal or potentially privileged materials. The government isn't able to use the evidence until the special master's review.

What he's saying: “My understanding is there is some question because of the special master appointment by the judge in Florida whether they can brief at this point,” Warner told CBS' "Face the Nation" on Sunday.

  • “We need clarification on that from that judge as quickly as possible because it is essential that the intelligence community, leadership at least, get a briefing of the damage assessment.”

Context: Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines has said the U.S. intelligence community is conducting an assessment of the potential risks stemming from the removal of the classified and top secret documents.

The bottom line: “I believe that it’s our congressional duty to have that oversight,” Warner said when asked why Congress should get the details of an ongoing investigation.

  • “Remember what’s at stake here is the fact that if some of these documents involved human intelligence and that information got out, people will die.
  • "If there are penetrations of our signals intelligence, literally years of work could be destroyed. If there's intelligence that's been shared with us by allies and that is mishandled, all of that could be in jeopardy."

What to watch: "I believe there will be a briefing as soon as there's clarification whether this can be performed or not," Warner said.

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