When Bob Corker was Chattanooga’s mayor a decade ago, his encounters with “foreign powers” mostly were limited to dealings with neighboring towns in Hamilton County.

These days, as the top Republican on the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he’s more likely to be found in far-flung corners of the Earth.

The blunt-spoken Chattanoogan has become a globe-trotter since he assumed his role on the Democratic-run committee some 16 months ago. He’s racked up visits to 55 countries, including hot spots such as the Syrian border and Ukraine.

And with his occasional razor-tongued criticisms of President Barack Obama’s foreign policies, Corker’s become the go-to guy for journalists seeking the GOP viewpoint, giving him a national presence in newspapers and on TV news shows.

Read more from our partners at the
Times Free Press