Author of the Patriot Act Says NSA Bulk Collection Is Illegal
Since the revelations about the NSA from Edward Snowden’s leaks last year, Representative Jim Sensenbrenner, who authored the Patriot Act, has come out in opposition to certain NSA surveillance practices, particularly bulk collection of Americans’ telephone metadata.
The NSA says that its authority to vacuum up all Americans’ call records comes from the Patriot Act’s Section 215. Sensenbrenner says that “no fair reading of the text would allow for this program.” In other words, the NSA is acting beyond the authority granted to it by law.
In testimony yesterday, Sensenbrenner said Congress is likely to take away NSA’s bulk collection capabilities. Here he is giving the DOJ’s James Cole a piece of his mind: