Thursday, May 28, 2020
President Donald Trump positioned himself well to the left of the Democratic Party on Wednesday by threatening to veto a clean renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) being pushed by House Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Studious critics pointed out that Trump himself signed into law the long-contentious spying authority he recently began railing against. "He literally signed warrantless surveillance of Americans into law on January 19, 2018, with the reauthorization of FISA 702," observed former Republican Rep. Justin Amash (I-Mich.).
A presidential signing statement from 2018 reflects Trump's prior view of FISA spying authority:
This intelligence is vital to keeping the Nation safe. As shown by the recent attacks in New York City and elsewhere around the globe, we face a constant threat from foreign terrorist networks and other foreign actors who would do us harm. In order to detect and prevent attacks before they happen, we must be able to intercept the communications of foreign targets who are reasonably believed to possess foreign intelligence information. Section 702 provides the necessary authority, and it has proven to be among the Nation's most effective foreign intelligence tools. It has enabled our Intelligence Community to disrupt numerous plots against our citizens at home and our warfighters abroad, and it has unquestionably saved American lives. The Act I have signed today preserves and extends this critically important national security tool.
Admin's note: Participants in this discussion must follow the site's moderation policy. Profanity will be filtered. Abusive conduct is not allowed.