Numerous House and Senate lawmakers condemned the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act renewal on Wednesday because it would still allow the Deep State to unconstitutionally spy on American citizens.
The House Freedom Caucus claimed the FISA renewal legislation contains weak proposals which do nothing to fix the fundamental problems of the secret court that led to the FBI’s unconstitutional spying of Trump campaign associates and will leave Americans exposed to the same kind of abuses.
“Members of the Freedom Caucus have long called for reforms to FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act). Recent revelations that FISA was severely and repeatedly used to spy on a presidential campaign are beyond the pale—if the government can misuse this system to spy on a presidential campaign, they can surely do it to any other American citizen,” members of the caucus said.
— House Freedom Caucus (@freedomcaucus) March 11, 2020
“As Congress considers reauthorizing FISA, anything short of significant and substantive reforms would betray the trust of the American people. The House Freedom Caucus will oppose any bill that does not meet a Constitutional standard for the protections of American citizens’ rights. We will also oppose any ‘clean’, short-term reauthorization of the current, harmful version of FISA.”
Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) delivered a powerful speech on the House floor highlighting the problems with the FISA renewal legislation and slamming House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) for drafting the bill behind closed doors with lobbyists and Deep State bureaucrats.
“The chairman of the committee pulled the bill, canceled the hearing, canceled the mark-up of this bill, and they took it behind closed doors,” Massie said.
“They took it into the back room to draft it. Why did they go into the back room? Because the lobbyists aren’t in the committee. The Deep State doesn’t get a vote on the committee, so they got them in the back room with them. The lobbyists and the Deep State helped draft this bill that we’re going to vote on today.”
Massie also pointed out that the House will rush the Deep State-backed bill through before House members get an adequate amount of time to review it.
“And how much time do we have to review it? Less than 24 hours!…There’s a rule in this House that guarantees 72 hours to review a bill. They’re going to suspend that rule here in a few minutes,” he said.
Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) also condemned “weak sauce” FISA deal and jabbing “impotent” Attorney General William Barr for supporting it.
“The ‘Deal’ on FISA is weak sauce diluted & made impotent by A.G. Barr. None of the reforms prevent secret FISA court from abusing the rights of Americans. None of the reforms prevent a President of either party from a politically motivated investigation. Big Disappointment!” he tweeted Tuesday.
The ‘Deal’ on FISA is weak sauce diluted & made impotent by A.G. Barr. None of the reforms prevent secret FISA court from abusing the rights of Americans. None of the reforms prevent a President of either party from a politically motivated investigation. Big Disappointment!
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) March 10, 2020
Sen. Mike Lee (R-Texas) vowed to oppose the bill and urged President Trump to veto if it passes.
“The House FISA deal doesn’t fix what’s wrong with FISA. It would not have stopped the spying that occurred against @realDonaldTrump. I will do everything I can to oppose it in the Senate. If it passes, @realDonaldTrump should veto it,” Lee tweeted.
The House FISA deal doesn’t fix what’s wrong with FISA. It would not have stopped the spying that occurred against @realDonaldTrump. I will do everything I can to oppose it in the Senate. If it passes, @realDonaldTrump should veto it.
— Mike Lee (@SenMikeLee) March 10, 2020
President Trump indicated he would not sign the revamped bill unless significant FISA reforms were included, according to Paul.
“The proposal I gave him was this: Don’t use FISA – which is a foreign intelligence court – to spy on Americans,” Paul told Neil Cavuto earlier this month.
— Lou Dobbs (@LouDobbs) March 4, 2020
“Simply say that Americans, if you want to spy on them, you have to go to a constitutional Article III court to get the wiretap. This would protect Americans from the abuses that happened to the Trump campaign, but these abuses could happen to the Republicans or Democrats if we have biased people either in the FBI or in the intelligence agencies. So I think the best reform is, let’s take American out of FISA and let’s keep the Foreign Surveillance Court targeted towards foreigners.”
The bill, known as the USA FREEDOM Reauthorization Act of 2020, has broad support from House Democrats, including Nadler, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff.
“Along with the House Leadership, we have engaged in bipartisan negotiations with input from many members to get to a deal on reforming FISA while reauthorizing important national security provisions set to expire this weekend. Through those negotiations, we have been able to incorporate significant reforms to increase civil liberty and privacy protections to the base bill, and additional provisions that should garner bipartisan support,” Nadler and Schiff said in a statement.
The bill will be voted on later Wednesday.
Twitter: Follow @WhiteIsTheFury
Attorney General Barr, a George HW Bush CIA crony, instituted surveillance of innocent Americans BEFORE 9/11 when he was Bush’s AG. Now he’s opposing Trump, Rand Paul & Mike Lee on FISA reform.