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Thomas Burr

Washington D.C. bureau reporter, Government

202-662-8732, tburr@sltrib.com


  • (Chris Detrick  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, speaks during the town-hall meeting in Brighton High School Thursday February 9, 2017. Congressman’s shooting prompts calls for more security, joined by Utah politicians targeted by threats
    After the shooting of a congressional leader on Wednesday, Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz has joined a chorus of members urging further protection for Congr...
    Updated Jun 16 2017 06:34 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Al Hartmann  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Congresswoman Mia Love speaks with Kristine and Gene Hughes, two of the three original founders of Natures Sunshine at a  45th anniversary celebration at the company headquarters in Lehi Tuesday April 11. Utah’s members offer prayers after congressman is shot
    Utah’s members of Congress offered their prayers and support for a Louisiana congressman and others shot by a gunman in a ballpark just outside Washin...
    Updated Jun 14 2017 11:42 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Scott Sommerdorf | The Salt Lake Tribune)   U.S. Congressman Chris Stewart, R-Utah, speaks at the Utah Republican Party Organizing Convention, Saturday, May 19, 2017. Stewart heralds Sessions’ testimony, says probes should continue
    Rep. Chris Stewart, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, praised Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ impassioned testimony before a Senate panel ...
    Updated Jun 14 2017 07:55 am   |     |   Share

  • Jacquelyn Martin |  AP file photo  Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has been replaced as House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman. Chaffetz out as Oversight chairman as Trey Gowdy, a former federal prosecutor, steps in
    As he prepares to leave the U.S. House at month’s end, Rep. Jason Chaffetz is no longer chairman of one of the more powerful and high-profile committe...
    Updated Jun 14 2017 07:54 am   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   The two buttes that make up the namesake for the Bears Ears National Monument reveal the vast landscape surrounding them as part of the 1.35 million acres in southeastern Utah protected by President Barack Obama. As seen on Friday June 9, 2017. Zinke recommends diminishing size of Bears Ears but says area ‘merits some degree of protection’
    Washington • In his initial report on Bears Ears National Monument, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is urging the White House to reduce its size to focu...
    Updated Jun 17 2017 06:28 pm   |     |   Share

  • Pable Martinez Monsivais | AP file photo Senate Judiciary Committee member Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., center, talks with Committee Chairman Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, right and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, March 21, 2017, during the committee’s confirmation hearing for Supreme Court Justice nominee Neil Gorsuch. Funeral potato takeover and planning to ‘live forever’: Hatch takes to humor on Twitter
    Sen. Orrin Hatch is no Donald Trump when it comes to use of social media — perhaps, some might say, that’s a good thing­ — but the Utah Republican’s o...

    Updated Jun 12 2017 02:57 pm   |     |   Share

  • Scott Applewhite  |  AP file photo Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has canceled a scheduled hearing Wednesday on the reported James Comey memo that allegedly says President Donald Trump asked him to drop the investigation of Michael Flynn, former national security adviser. Chaffetz said Comey wants to speak with special counsel Robert Mueller before testifying. Chaffetz says fired FBI chief’s testimony a win for White House, shows nothing ‘illegal or nefarious’ by President Trump
    Washington • U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Thursday that fired FBI Director James Comey’s sworn testimony before a Senate committee validated Presiden...
    Updated Jun 08 2017 11:09 pm   |     |   Share

  • In this March 20, 2017 photo, FBI Director James Comey pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, before the House Intelligence Committee hearing on allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.  Comey’s appearance Thursday before the Senate intelligence committee is one of the most anticipated congressional hearings in years.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) Poll: Utahns are split on why Trump fired the FBI director
    Washington • Utahns are split on whether President Donald Trump fired FBI Director James Comey because he was unfit for office or to protect the White...
    Updated Jun 07 2017 08:49 pm   |     |   Share

  • In this Nov. 4, 2003 file photo, Assistant Attorney General Christopher Wray, speaks at the news conference at the Justice Department in Washington.   President Donald Trump says he’ll nominate Wray, a former Justice Department official, as FBI director.   (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds) Hatch applauds Trump’s choice to head the FBI
    Washington • Sen. Orrin Hatch, the former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Wednesday praised President Donald Trump’s pick of Christophe...
    Updated Jun 07 2017 07:26 pm   |     |   Share

  • Ross D. Franklin | AP file photo In this Saturday, Sept. 5, 2009 file photo, throngs of hikers trek through the Virgin River along The Narrows in Zion National Park, Utah.  Trump declares June Outdoor Recreation Month for community and state parks. But what about national parks?
    Washington • President Donald Trump on Wednesday proclaimed June to be Outdoor Recreation Month, praising state and community parks, state reservoirs ...
    Updated May 31 2017 11:10 pm   |     |   Share

  • Manuel Balce Ceneta | AP file photo  Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, hailed President Donald Trump reported decision to pull out of Paris Accords. Lee, Hatch say leaving the global climate pact will boost American jobs and decrease energy costs
    Washington • Sens. Mike Lee and Orrin Hatch praised the apparent decision by the Trump administration to pull out of a global climate pact, arguing th...
    Updated May 31 2017 11:14 pm   |     |   Share

  • Rep. Mia Love Utah’s Mia Love pushing Trump to let Haitian refugees stay in the U.S. longer
    Washington • The Trump administration has granted a six-month extension to about 58,000 Haitian immigrants who fled their country, or remained in the ...
    Updated May 30 2017 11:14 pm   |     |   Share

  • D.C. underground pot market is growing, thanks to an unwitting Chaffetz
    Washington • As Rep. Jason Chaffetz looks to leave office, one of his unintentional legacies could be this: propping up an underground market for mari...
    Updated May 28 2017 09:28 am   |     |   Share

  • Scott Applewhite |  AP file photo Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, is demanding the FBI turn over documents related to fired director James Comey’s communications with Presidents Trump and Obama. Chaffetz doubles down on request for Comey documents after FBI balks
    Washington • The FBI said Thursday that because of the appointment of a new special counsel to investigate Russia’s interference in the U.S. election,...
    Updated May 25 2017 11:30 pm   |     |   Share

  • Carolyn Kaster  |  AP file photo President Donald Trump holds up a signed Antiquities Executive Order during a ceremony at the Interior Department in Washington, Wednesday, April, 26, 2017. The president is asking for a review of the designation of tens of millions of acres of land as ’national monuments.’ Western group sues Interior for documents on monument designations
    Washington • A government watchdog group is suing the Interior Department for any records relating to five national monuments named under President Ba...
    Updated May 24 2017 11:40 pm   |     |   Share

  • Evan Vucci  |  AP file photo President Donald Trump’s budget plan proposes big cuts in most departments — except the military and Veteran’s Affairs. Trump budget slashes money for federal lands, needy and health care
    Washington • President Donald Trump’s proposed 2018 fiscal budget would hit Utah’s needy and disabled, cut block grants to communities, slash funding ...
    Updated May 23 2017 10:28 pm   |     |   Share

  • Scott Applewhite  |  AP file photo Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has canceled a scheduled hearing Wednesday on the reported James Comey memo that allegedly says President Donald Trump asked him to drop the investigation of Michael Flynn, former national security adviser. Chaffetz said Comey wants to speak with special counsel Robert Mueller before testifying. Chaffetz delays Comey hearing, says ex-FBI director to talk to special counsel first
    Washington • Rep. Jason Chaffetz has postponed a planned hearing Wednesday to question James Comey after the fired FBI director said that before he te...
    Updated May 22 2017 09:29 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Leah Hogsten  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Rep. Jason Chaffetz, seated next to his wife Julie, told members of the media at his home in Alpine during an impromptu press conference that he was leaving Congress to spend more time with his family. Chaffetz announced Thursday May 18, 2017 that he will step down from office June 30. In a letter to constituents, the Utah Republican and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said he did not want a ’lifetime career’ in Congress, although it is rumored that he is in talks about a job with Fox News and hasn’t ruled out a race for Utah governor in 2020. Chaffetz to step down from Congress at the end of June, regrets not finishing Clinton email probe
    Alpine • Noting that he “never promised a lifetime of service,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz announced Thursday that he will step down from office June 30. Th...
    Updated Jun 01 2017 01:02 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, speaks during the town-hall meeting in Brighton High School Thursday February 9, 2017. Chaffetz wants Comey to testify Wednesday
    Washington • House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz has invited fired FBI Director James Comey to testify next week in a public hearing abo...
    Updated May 26 2017 08:28 pm   |     |   Share

  • AP File Photo Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, says he will get reported Comey memo, using his Oversight Committee subpoena powers if necessary. Utah’s Chaffetz says he will subpoena Comey memo if necessary
    Washington • House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz said Tuesday that he has requested — and will subpoena, if necessary — a memo reportedl...
    Updated May 17 2017 12:22 am   |     |   Share

  • (Al Hartmann  |  Tribune file photo)   Former Utah Sen. Bob Bennett speaks at the The Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah, Jan.  27, 2016. U. looks to create endowed chair honoring the late Bob Bennett
    Washington • Senators, former staffers and friends of the late Sen. Bob Bennett gathered Tuesday night to relish in their favorite stories about the U...
    Updated May 16 2017 11:17 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |   Tribune file photo)   U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, says he trusts President Donald Trump with the nation’s top secrets. Says investigation into possible leaks should be done by the House Intelligence Committee — not his Oversight panel. Chaffetz: Trump’s sharing of intel with Russia should be probed — by House Intel panel
    Washington • House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz says the reports that President Donald Trump shared highly classified infor...
    Updated May 22 2017 03:47 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  Tribune File Photo)    Presidential candidate and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman talks with members of the media during a tour of Nelson Laboratories in Taylorsville last Thursday. Could Trump-Russia cloud be delaying Huntsman nomination?
    Washington • President Donald Trump met last week with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in the Oval Office, but Ki...
    Updated May 15 2017 03:15 pm   |     |   Share

  • FILE - In this May 4, 2017 file photo, President Donald Trump speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. Trump, in an apparent warning to his fired FBI director, said Friday, May 12, 2017, that James Comey had better hope there are no ’tapes’ of their conversations. Trump’s tweet came the morning after he asserted Comey had told him three times that he wasn’t under FBI investigation.  (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File) Trump is ‘fully cooperating’ in Russia probe, Utah Sen. Mike Lee says
    Washington • Sen. Mike Lee said Sunday that, to the best of his knowledge, President Donald Trump is “fully cooperating” with the probe into possible ...
    Updated May 15 2017 03:16 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |   Tribune file photo)   U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has called on the Justice Department’s inspector general to review the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Chaffetz calls for Justice Department review of Comey firing
    Washington • Rep. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, requested on Wednesday that the Department of Justice’s inspector general...
    Updated May 10 2017 11:43 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Rick Egan  |   Tribune file photo)    Sen. Orrin Hatch answers a few questions from the media before giving the keynote address, at the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition luncheon, at the Grand America, Friday, Nov. 18, 2016. Hatch on health care overhaul: ‘The public wants every dime they can be given’
    Washington • Sen. Orrin Hatch said Tuesday that making changes to Obamacare is difficult because once Americans get on the government “dole, they’ll t...
    Updated May 10 2017 11:15 am   |     |   Share

  • (Leah Hogsten  |  Tribune file photo)   l-r Sens. Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee, shown here during a 2014 news conference, are often at odds on issues that pit the establishment GOP against hard-line conservatives. But on the issue of criminal justice reform, they’ve done a role reversal. With House version DOA in the Senate, it's now up to Hatch and Lee to write new health care bill
    Washington • Republicans took a victory lap this week after the House passed a bill to gut Obamacare and replace it with a new GOP version. But the mo...
    Updated May 07 2017 07:02 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Teri Bladen, of Mountain Green, center, holds signs during the Utah Hands Off Our Healthcare Rally at the Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building in Salt Lake City Thursday, May 4, 2017. Utahns protest GOP’s vote to repeal, replace Obamacare
    Washington • Rolling off the House floor on a knee-scooter after surgery on a 12-year-old foot injury, Rep. Jason Chaffetz said he had ignored his doc...
    Updated May 22 2017 03:28 pm   |     |   Share

  • Where is it?  Utah State Road 261 heading north across Cedar Mesa towards the ’Bears Ears’ in San Juan County.  .photo by Al Hartmann. 08/12/2000 Tribal leaders: We’ll take Trump to court if he rescinds Bears Ears
    Washington • Tribal leaders who pushed for the Bears Ears National Monument said Wednesday they hope the Trump administration will leave the protectio...
    Updated May 03 2017 11:20 pm   |     |   Share

  • Walking between mineral-streaked cliffs of Navajo Sandstone, hikers pass beaver ponds and pre-historic rock art sites enroute to the 126-foot-high Lower Calf Creek water falls shown in the Bureau of Land Management’s Calf Creek Recreation Area in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in southern Utah, Aug. 30, 2011. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio) National monuments harm the economy, Utah public lands official tells Congress
    Washington • National monument designations in Utah have harmed the economy and way of life for communities abutting them, killing jobs and harming ra...
    Updated May 02 2017 11:31 pm   |     |   Share