Democratic Sen. Leahy Wants Oversight of Surveillance Programs

Monday, 24 Jun 2013 05:09 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

The chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Patrick Leahy, introduced a bill on Monday seeking to rein in the sweeping U.S. government surveillance programs exposed by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

The bill would expand reporting requirements for the secret programs, add more court reviews and move up the expiration of the authorization for some of the data collection by 2-1/2 years.

It is similar to legislation that Leahy, a Vermont Democrat, has introduced twice before. But it may have more momentum now that Snowden has triggered a debate about the proper balance between Americans' privacy and national security.

Snowden, who is believed to be in Moscow, has been charged by the United States for disclosing the secret U.S. surveillance programs made possible by the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and the Patriot Act.

Leahy's co-sponsors for the latest bill include Republican Senator Mike Lee and four Senate Democrats - Mark Udall, Ron Wyden, Richard Blumenthal and Jon Tester.

Among other things, the bill would let the government obtain records using Section 215 of the Patriot Act only when it can establish that the information is relevant to an authorized investigation and linked to a foreign terrorist group or power.

Critics have argued that Section 215 vastly expanded the U.S. government's power to spy on Americans.

The legislation would also shorten the expiration of the FISA Amendments Act to June 2015 from December 2017, and require an audit on the impact of the surveillance on Americans' privacy.

The FISA Amendments Act, passed in 2008 and reauthorized last year, grants the government wide surveillance powers.

Privacy advocates argue that the sweeping surveillance activities infringe on Americans' civil liberties, and say the existing oversight is insufficient.

President Barack Obama's administration and several high-profile lawmakers have defended the programs as a vital national security tool that is overseen by the administration, Congress and a special court.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Man Detained after Threats at LA Times Building

Saturday, 19 Apr 2014 22:03 PM

A man suspected of making threatening statements about a shooting and forcing the lockdown of the Los Angeles Times buil . . .

Body Found by Highway Is Missing Massachusetts Boy

Saturday, 19 Apr 2014 21:42 PM

The body of a small boy apparently cast off the side of a highway in Massachusetts has been confirmed as a missing 5-yea . . .

Scam Burns Miami-Dade Fire Department From Within

Saturday, 19 Apr 2014 21:33 PM

South Florida is no stranger to insurance fraud. But a recently exposed scam involving public workers is sure to leave t . . .

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved