Durbin: Defense Bill Commits $48M to U.S. Embassy Security Upgrades

Sunday, 04 Aug 2013 10:30 AM

By Amy Woods

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Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin said Sunday the threat of terrorism that has shut down 21 U.S. embassies worldwide is "a big deal" and has prompted the addition of embassy security upgrades in the new defense appropriations bill.

Durbin, appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press," said the spending bill sets aside $48 million specifically for security upgrades to 35 embassies.

"We need to know and realize we're living in an increasingly dangerous world, and this specific threat that we've been briefed on over and over again has reached a new level," he said.

Both the Senate and the House are also debating the government-surveillance program and how to balance it with the privacy of Americans.

"How much do you need to collect, who should hold this, does the government need all this information on everybody in this country" are some of the questions on the table, Durbin said.

"Let's do everything we can to protect the privacy of innocent Americans," he said.

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