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Tags: jim jordan | fisa | reforms | warrantless searches

Rep. Jordan: FISA Reforms Must Require Warrants

By    |   Thursday, 11 April 2024 03:33 PM EDT

House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan said Thursday he'll refuse to vote to renew Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act unless it includes a requirement that federal law enforcement officials obtain a warrant to search for U.S. citizens' data.

"If we just count on the FBI to follow their own rules, they've proven they can't do that," the Ohio Republican said on "The Laura Coates Show" on Sirius XM. "There was a story a year ago in The Washington Post [where] 278,000 times, different times, there were searches of U.S. persons where the FBI didn't follow their own rules [in] the law that was in place."

The "only way" the law will work, is the "tried and true system" where if the data of American citizens is being searched, "you've got to go to a separate and equal branch of government and get a warrant, and that's what we're pushing for."

And if there is a warrant provision, Jordan said he's "fine with renewing the 702 program because we have the protections you need for American citizens," but if "it doesn't go in, then I won't support renewing the program."

Jordan's comments come after the vote on the program overhaul, backed by Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson failed Wednesday after several critics, including former President Donald Trump, claimed it gave the government too much power to spy on U.S. citizens. 

"You've got to have a warrant requirement when you're going to go search this database on U.S. persons," Jordan said. "It's plain and simple. And right now there's not.

"When you're surveilling foreigners, that's all fine, but inevitably what happens is Americans get caught up in that because you may be talking to some business person overseas or whatever, and then the FBI can search this, what I call, this giant database or giant haystack of information."

Section 702 of the FISA statute concerns foreign intelligence surveillance, and Jordan said he has "no problem surveilling people overseas. They don't have constitutional rights like American citizens do."

But when Americans get caught up in the surveillance, then there must be guarantees that warrants are sought before spying begins on them, said Jordan. 

"If you're going to search this database of information that gets collected and the search is based on the American's name, on the U.S. person's name, that's different than searching that database and collecting information on foreigners," said Jordan.

"If you're going to search Americans, what you've got to do is go to a separate branch of government, the judicial branch, and get a probable cause warrant to do that search. That is how our system works. That is our Constitution. That is how we protect liberty."

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Politics
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan said Thursday he'll refuse to vote to renew Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act unless it includes a requirement that federal law enforcement officials obtain a warrant to search for U.S. citizens' data.
jim jordan, fisa, reforms, warrantless searches
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2024-33-11
Thursday, 11 April 2024 03:33 PM
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