Holt Statement on Reported White House Plan to Limit Domestic Surveillance
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Rush Holt, the former chairman of the House Select Intelligence Oversight Panel, today released the following statement in response to news reports that the White House will limit domestic surveillance of innocent Americans:
“I hope the Administration doesn’t think such a proposal will end the debate over domestic spying. In fact, it’s only a small piece of a solution.
“This proposal reportedly won’t restore a probable-cause standard to monitor Americans’ communications. It reportedly enshrines an overbroad ‘two-hop’ rule – meaning, in essence, that if you’ve ever talked to anyone who has ever talked to anyone who is suspected of wrongdoing, you could be spied on indefinitely. And it reportedly fails to address other key problems uncovered over the last year, such as the NSA’s attempts to subvert encryption standards, which pose a direct threat to the security of all online communications and commerce.
“Should the House consider proposals to rein in domestic spying, I will offer amendments to address these problems head-on. The debate must be an open one that offers a real chance at ending a system that treats all Americans as suspects first and citizens second.”
Holt has introduced the Surveillance State Repeal Act, legislation that would repeal the legal authority that enables warrantless surveillance of innocent Americans.