Press Releases

Nadler Statement on Declassified Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Opinions

Washington, May 19, 2023
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, the Intelligence Community declassified two opinions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, one showing “persistent and widespread problems” with Section 702 of FISA.  In response, Ranking Member Nadler issued the following statement: 
"In the middle of Chairman Jordan’s overzealous attack on federal law enforcement and the absurd claims advanced by the MAGA crowd on the weaponization subcommittee, I am hesitant to comment at all—but the abuse of FISA authority detailed in this opinion demands a response from all members of Congress.  Section 702 exists only to protect the country from external threats to our national security.  The government may only use it to target non-U.S. persons located outside of the United States.  If the FBI insists on using it for routine domestic criminal investigations, without a warrant or probable cause, then perhaps they should not have access to this information at all.  The problem is not that the FBI unlawfully targeted thousands of Americans of any particular political view.  They appear to have conducted backdoor searches on Black Lives Matter protestors, January 6th rioters, and everyone in between.  The problem is that they unlawfully targeted thousands of Americans.  Period.
"The FBI says that they have instituted new procedures to make this kind of abuse impossible.  They have made that promise before.   Without significant changes to the law to prevent this abuse, I will oppose the reauthorization of this authority."