Durbin Meets with Nominee To Be Archivist of The United States

The position’s importance is underscored by the National Archives and Records Administration’s role in responding to investigations by the Senate Judiciary Committee and others into former President Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today met with Dr. Colleen Shogan, nominee to be Archivist of the United States to administrate over the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). Dr. Shogan’s nomination has gained national attention after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) searched former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence forclassified documents following NARA’s discovery of classified materials in several boxes of government records that Trump improperly removed from the White House. 

NARA’s role in identifying presidential and classified records at Mar-a-Lago, and in identifying records responsive to congressional investigations into the January 6 attack, underscores the importance of its work. Notably, the Senate Judiciary Committee has relied on NARA in its continuing efforts to investigate the events detailed in the Committee’s Subverting Justice: How the Former President and his Allies Pressured DOJ to Overturn the 2020 Election report. Likewise, the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the U.S. Capitol continues to rely on NARA to help provide a full accounting of Trump’s attempts to hold on to power. 

During their meeting, Durbin urged Dr. Shogan to ensure that NARA responds to Presidential Records Act (PRA) requests from Congress in a timely manner so that Congress can conduct oversight of any misconduct by former White House officials.

“The aftermath of the Trump Administration has made crystal clear the necessity of adequate recordkeeping and the preservation of presidential history. Trump and his administration attempted to shield their misconduct both in office and post-presidency, as we can see from the number of classified and sensitive government records uncovered at Mar-a-Lago. We need to be able to rely on our nation’s archivist for accurate records and proper storage of presidential records for the sake of historical preservation and to allow misconduct to be identified and investigated,” Durbin said. “I am confident that Dr. Shogan will take her role as chief archivist seriously and provide the documentation the Senate Judiciary Committee and all Congressional Committees need in a timely manner.”

A photo of Durbin’s meeting is available here.

Dr. Shogan is currently serving as the Senior Vice President and Director of the David M. Rubenstein Center for White House History at the White House Historical Association and as a professor at Georgetown University. Before her current position, she worked for more than a decade at the Library of Congress, including in senior positions as the Assistant Deputy Librarian for Collections and Services and the Deputy Director of the Congressional Research Service.