House and Senate Intelligence committees
have become “cheerleaders” for the NSA.
Are Congressmen cheerleaders for the Constitution? No. But they love to cheer on the unconstitutional 1984 Police Surveillance State.
Rep. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R - Wisconsin) says the House and Senate Intelligence committees have become “cheerleaders” for the National Security Agency.
“Instead of putting the brakes on overreaches, they’ve been stepping on the gas,” he said of the committees, which are led by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).
In an interview with The Hill, Sensenbrenner — who has offered legislation to rein in the NSA — called rival legislation “a joke,” reports The Hill.
He said Director of National Intelligence James Clapper should be prosecuted for “lying” to Congress on the nation’s surveillance programs.
Sensenbrenner, the original author of the Patriot Act, wants to limit the NSA’s surveillance powers in the wake of leaks by former CIA contractor Edward Snowden.
“There is no limit — apparently, according to the NSA — on what they can collect. And that has got to be stopped,” he said.
The 18-term lawmaker claims Congress fell down on the job of overseeing the NSA.
He said the failure in oversight occurred after Congress reauthorized the Patriot Act in 2006, just as he was stepping down as Judiciary Committee chairman.
The NSA then won secret approval from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to use a provision of the Patriot Act to collect records on all U.S. phone calls.
|GOP Congressman James Sensenbrenner|
was the Watchman and at the very
least he was asleep at his post.
The court authorized the sweeping data collection even though the provision, Section 215, only allows the NSA to collect records that are “relevant” to terrorism.
“I don’t think the oversight was vigorously done by the Judiciary Committee,” Sensenbrenner said.
Sensenbrenner, along with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), has introduced the USA Freedom Act to end the bulk collection of phone records, limit the NSA’s power and tighten oversight.
But Rogers and Feinstein are fighting to protect the NSA’s authority, especially its sweeping phone record collection program. Feinstein has introduced a bill that would make certain reforms to promote transparency but would endorse the phone data collection.
“The Feinstein bill is a joke,” Sensenbrenner said.
He said that her view is essentially “if you like your NSA, you can keep it.”
Telling the Truth is a Criminal Act
Showing his true colors on the Bill of Rights, Sensenbrenner rips into Snowden during the interview.
Although the Snowden leaks revealed the NSA’s expansive surveillance programs and prompted the movement to limit its power, Sensenbrenner said the former NSA contractor is no hero and should face charges.
“He’s a criminal,” Sensenbrenner said. “I believe that the Russians, in showing good faith, ought to return him to face the music.” Note, that when Snowden was hiding in Hong Kong (not Russia) Sensenbrenner was no where to be seen with any support for the whistleblower. That says it all. He is full of shit.
But the Republican lawmaker acknowledged that the Snowden leaks are the only reason he knows about the NSA’s data collection program.
“What he brought to light showed that the NSA was doing some (yeah, right, SOME) things that were far beyond what the intent of the law should have been and basically gave Leahy and I insight on how to improve the Patriot Act to try to plug this up,” he said.
|All together now. Give us a . . . |
|A nice set of pom poms. Why can't baseball have cheerleaders?|