Himes \”Quite Disturbed\” By New NSA Disclosures

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U.S. Rep. Jim Himes said he is profoundly concerned by fresh disclosures, reported in the Washington Post, that the National Security Agency repeatedly violated privacy rules.

\”I am quite disturbed by the news that the NSA violated laws and internal procedures established to protect Americans’ privacy nearly 3,000 times in just one year,\’\’ Himes said in a statement issued Friday afternoon. \”I have been assured by the leadership in the intelligence community and by the President that there has been no abuse of these programs. These assurances factored into my decision to vote against the Amash amendment to the Defense Appropriations Act, so this new report is profoundly concerning to me. While I understand that a majority of these incidents, particularly those related to roaming, were mistakes, the bottom line is that when we are talking about constitutional rights, we need a system and culture that is zero-tolerance—the NSA must foster a culture and systems that fully protect the rights of the American people as it works to protect us from harm.\”

“It is clear based on today’s reports that we need to examine and improve those systems and culture within the NSA and improve congressional oversight of our nation’s intelligence gathering. While a system of this magnitude will never be without errors, the intelligence community should lean into, not away from, reporting violations of privacy to Congress. I stand ready to work with my colleagues on the committee to ensure these kinds of mistakes do not happen again and that the civil liberties of the American people are being fully respected.”

The Post report was based on a leaked internal audit from May, 2012, violated privacy rules related to the government\’s datat collection programs 2,776 times in a one-year period. According to the audit, 1,904 of these instances were “roamers\” — cases where a foreigner whose cellphone was being wiretapped without a warrant came to the United States, where warrants are required.

Himes voted no on an amendment last month by Rep. Justin Amash, R-Michigan, that would have defunded the NSA\’s data-collection program. 

 

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9 thoughts on “Himes \”Quite Disturbed\” By New NSA Disclosures

  1. enness

    “I have been assured… by the President that there has been no abuse of these programs.”

    Welcome to the club, friend.

  2. Realsaramerica

    Exactly – now Congressman Himes knows how his constituents felt when he voted against the amendment and he told us we were being too “black and white” in our arguments when we said we felt his vote wasn’t defending our civil liberties. In fact, he actually used the phrase: “Drill, Baby Drill” to me of an example of how “black and white” I was being.
    “While I understand that a majority of these incidents, particularly those related to roaming, were mistakes, the bottom line is that when we are talking about constitutional rights, we need a system and culture that is zero-tolerance—”
    Um…yeah Jim! That’s what we’ve been saying to you for YEARS. And you keep talking to us about NUANCE and how BLACK AND WHITE we are.

  3. StevenRosenbaum

    One can say, with certainty, two things. The first is that Rep. Himes knows he will not have to answer to his constituents for his legislative record. The second is that Ms. Altimari will never ask Mr. Himes a question, because it is far easier to reprint his press releases.

  4. Richard

    Some of us are quite disturbed over Himes oversight.

    Did you wait long enough to get all the polls in Jim? After all, you wouldn’t want to be on the wrong side. Or on the right side out of principal.

    1. Connecticut is Circling the Drain

      The other difference is that the press actually had intellectual curiosity and integrity during Watergate. This media is complicit in Oama’s adventures.

      1. Billy Hypocrite

        Just like it was complicit under W Bush, right, which let him get away with starting an unprovoked war and getting hit in the face by his wife during a fight while accepting his lame excuse of falling out on account of chocking on a pretzel.

    2. Billy Hypocrite

      Except, Skimmie, that under Watergate, a Republican president created a rogue gang of thieves designed to break into offices to steal evidence that would lead to an indictment.

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