(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued a statement following the House Judiciary Committee’s approval of a modified version of the USA FREEDOM Act, legislation that would end bulk data collection. Blumenthal is an original cosponsor of the bill introduced in the Senate last fall.
“The House Judiciary Committee’s action today is a crucial step in the right direction. However, it is not enough. This legislation makes important changes to some of the statutes that have allowed massive and widespread violations of Americans’ privacy, but it does not reform the underlying system that made those violations possible—a system in which secret courts make secret law without the benefit of hearing both sides of the argument. Real reform means turning the FISA courts into a real check on executive overreach by creating a Special Advocate who can represent the privacy rights of the American people. I will continue fighting to ensure that FISA reform ultimately includes a strong Special Advocate capable of holding the government accountable and protecting our privacy.”