Tags: mike lee | fisa | loophole | mack truck

Sen. Mike Lee: FISA Loophole Big Enough for a 'Mack Truck'

Image: Sen. Mike Lee: FISA Loophole Big Enough for a 'Mack Truck'
(Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 17 January 2018 02:18 PM

There have not been enough changes to a section of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to warrant a vote for it, but lawmakers just want to stop its loopholes, not the act itself, Sen. Mike Lee said Wednesday.

"Right now, and as the law has been amended in this most recent iteration, it has a loophole in it through which you can drive a Mack truck and a 747 and [an] Airbus," the Utah Republican, when explaining his no vote on the bill, told Fox News' "America's Newsroom."

"Neither I, nor Sen. [Rand] Paul, nor Sen. [Ron] Wyden, or [Pat] Leahy or any others who voted no last night want to end section 702," said Lee.

"That's not what this is all about. We want to make sure it can't be abused, that it can't be used to bring about illegal backdoor searches on American citizens."

Lee said he doesn't have any particular proof that the act has been abused, but the potential is there.

"My point is we know at some point in the future it will be abused if we don't put adequate protections in place," said Lee. "We have to make sure our laws are as tight as possible so they don't happen as often as they would otherwise."

All Americans should be concerned about their privacy, he added, and "about the fact that someone could be targeted on the basis of unpopular political beliefs at some point in the future. This is the reason why we have the Fourth Amendment and why we're a country and don't fly the Union Jack. We believe in privacy and we believe that our privacy is not at odds with our security."

Some of the law's protections on how electronic information is stored don't go far enough, said Lee.

"Some of these protections apply only with respect to a case where there is a predicated investigation," he said. "There are many stages of investigations at which those restrictions wouldn't apply. That's why I say this creates a loophole that's a mile wide and there are reforms. Reforms that would still protect the American people from those who want to harm us. But those reforms didn't even have a chance to be voted on and I think it's unfortunate."

Meanwhile, Lee thinks a deal on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will be made, but the trick will be to find something that brings an end to the underlying problem.

"We want to fix it in the sense we don't want people to be punished for having been brought here years or decades ago when they were children, and sometimes in some cases when they were infants by no choice of their own," the senator said. "At the same time, we want to fix it so that doesn't encourage more people to do it in the future, leading to more victimization."

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There have not been enough changes to a section of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to warrant a vote for it, but lawmakers just want to stop its loopholes, not the act itself, Sen. Mike Lee said Wednesday.
mike lee, fisa, loophole, mack truck
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2018-18-17
Wednesday, 17 January 2018 02:18 PM
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