House Poised To Take Another Crack At FISA Reauthorization

 The GOP-led House is positioned to have another go at reauthorizing Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), a spy tool set to sunset next week that proponents say is crucial to protecting national security.

revised bill, which shrinks the extension window from five to two years and implements some reforms, passed through the Rules Committee on Thursday evening. Votes on the floor are expected to begin in the morning on Friday.

The Hill reported there is room to consider an amendment that would add a warrant requirement for Section 702, which could alleviate privacy concerns, and a bill requiring a warrant for purchasing information on U.S. citizens from data brokers.

Nineteen Republicans joined with Democrats to oppose moving forward on Wednesday with the five-year extension of the provision that the government says is used to monitor non-U.S. citizens abroad and deter threats from terrorists and others.

Some members who voted against advancing the FISA bill are insistent on a warrant requirement for officials seeking to access data concerning U.S. citizens — ostensibly for law enforcement — that gets swept up in monitoring foreign persons.

A reporter noted that multiple lawmakers told Fox News that limiting the extension window to two years was a compromise that would allow former President Donald Trump to push for more changes if he wins another White House term.


Trump pushed lawmakers to “KILL FISA” while saying it was used to spy on his campaign, alluding to the FBI’s controversial efforts to get warrants to snoop on a 2016 campaign aide under a different part of FISA, Section 701, using an unverified dossier.

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) has argued the FISA legislation, called the Reforming Intelligence And Securing America Act, implements reforms that would “actually kill the abuses” directed at Trump’s 2016 campaign.

If the FISA legislation passes through the House, it will head to the Senate, where Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has said lawmakers “must act quickly on a bipartisan basis to ensure these vital national security authorities do not lapse.”

The deadline is April 19.

The Office of Management and Budget released a statement on Thursday evening that said the Biden administration “strongly supports” the bill to reauthorize Section 702, citing its uses to protect the homeland from a variety of threats.

But the statement also said the administration rejects the amendment offered by Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) that would implement a warrant requirement for Section 702.

“The amendment would prohibit U.S. officials from reviewing critical information that the Intelligence Community has already lawfully collected, with exceptions that are exceedingly narrow and unworkable in practice,” it said.

“Our intelligence, defense, and public safety communities are united: the extensive harms of this proposal simply cannot be mitigated. Therefore, the Administration strongly opposes the amendment,” the statement added.

House Poised To Take Another Crack At FISA Reauthorization House Poised To Take Another Crack At FISA Reauthorization Reviewed by Your Destination on April 12, 2024 Rating: 5

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