WEB Notes: Trump wants the NSA spy program renewed, is it any wonder? Is anyone surprised? The new boss is the same as the old boss.
The White House wants Congress to reauthorize two of the NSA’s largest surveillance programs before they expire at the end of the year.
One of them scans the traffic that passes through the massive internet cables going in and out of the U.S. and ends up catching vast number of American communications in its dragnet.
But how many? Lawmakers have been asking for years, and the intelligence community has consistently refused provide even a ballpark figure.
At a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, several members expressed frustration that intelligence chiefs – first under Obama, and now under Trump — have failed to provide any kind of estimate, even in classified briefings.
“The members of this committee and the public at large require that estimate to engage in a meaningful debate,” said Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., the leading Democrat on the committee. “We will not simply take the government’s word on the size of the so-called ‘incidental collection.”