[Congressional Record: March 4, 2011 (Senate)]
[Page S1263]                      

                        TRIBUTE TO DAVID S. KRIS

 Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Mr. President, I wish to thank and honor David 
Kris, who is leaving his position this week as the Assistant Attorney 
General for National Security at the Department of Justice, DOJ.
  Many of us in Congress--especially those of us on the Intelligence 
Committee and the Judiciary Committee who work closely with the 
administration on national security issues--are very sorry to see David 
Kris leave DOJ.
  As one of the Nation's leading experts on the Foreign Intelligence 
Surveillance Act, FISA, I will personally miss hearing from David, 
especially as the Congress moves to extend the sunsets on important 
provisions of FISA this spring. He testified with clarity and precision 
on issues of great complexity in all of his appearances before the 
Senate. I valued his insights.
  Congress created the position of Assistant Attorney General for 
National Security in 2006 to bring together the intelligence and the 
counterterrorism and counterespionage prosecution functions of the 
Department of Justice. Over the past 2 years, building on the 
professional, nonpolitical foundation established by his predecessors, 
Kenneth Wainstein and Patrick Rowan, David has managed the National 
Security Division in what has been, arguably, the most dangerous period 
since the September 11 attacks.
  Since David was sworn in at DOJ on March 25, 2009, terrorism 
investigations and prosecutions have been unfolding at an unprecedented 
scale and pace. Consider the following high profile counterterrorism 
arrests and prosecutions involving the National Security Division: the 
al-Qaida plot to bomb the New York subway system by Najibullah Zazi; 
the attempted bombing of Times Square by Faisal Shahzad; the attempted 
bombing of flight 253 on Christmas Day 2009 by Umar Farouk 
Abdulmutallab; the arrest and prosecution of David Headley, an American 
who helped plot the Mumbai attacks; and the arrest and prosecution of 
Hosam Smadi who was sentenced to 24 years in prison last year for 
plotting to blow up a Dallas skyscraper.
  Under David's leadership, the National Security Division also played 
an important role in the investigation and prosecution of a number of 
significant espionage, export control enforcement, and leak cases. In 
the summer of 2010, David played a prominent role in the arrest and 
swap of illegal Russian agents. He directed the prosecutions of Cuban 
spies, illegal exports of fighter jet engines and parts to Iran, and 
assistance to China in designing stealth cruise missiles. During his 
tenure, the National Security Division joined the Criminal Division in 
prosecuting more leak cases than ever before.
  David Kris joined DOJ in March 2009 after being confirmed unanimously 
by the U.S. Senate. He had previously served in the Justice Department 
from 1992 to 2003 as an attorney in the Criminal Division and as 
Associate Deputy Attorney General.
  I know that prior experience at DOJ served David well because once he 
was sworn in, he went to work right away to develop partnerships with 
the Intelligence community, the National Security Council, and 
  And I know David worked hard to ensure that the relevant agencies and 
entities were aware of the National Security Division's activities and 
that its activities were properly coordinated with the intelligence 
community and the Defense Department.
  It has been clear to us that David made it a priority to ensure that 
FBI national security investigations were conducted in accordance with 
the Constitution, statutes, and applicable guidelines. David also 
expanded the number of oversight attorney staff in his division and, as 
a result, the division's oversight section exceeded its annual goal for 
national security reviews for the first time in its history.
  I wish David Kris well in his future endeavors in the private sector. 
His replacement will have big shoes to fill.