Tucson, Ariz. – Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today called the National Security Agency’s overreaching domestic surveillance programs “a serious breach of faith between the federal government and the American people” and called on the administration to curtail and explain the excessive records sweeps documented over the past 48 hours.
“Senator Obama would not have supported this program under President Bush,” Grijalva said. “A secretive intelligence agency gathering millions of phone records and using them as it sees fit is the kind of excess many of us warned about after the Patriot Act became law. Continuing this program indefinitely gives the impression of being under constant siege and needing to know everything at all times to keep us safe, which I find a very troubling view of American security policy.”
Grijalva called for the court decisions approving the program – which is not limited to Verizon Business Networks and did not originate in April of this year, according to multiple reports – to be released so Congress and the public can understand the scope of the effort.
“We’re being assured that this is limited, supervised and no big deal,” Grijalva said. “When we heard the same under President Bush, we weren’t comfortable taking his word for it and moving on. I feel the same today.”