FBI Director Lobbies For Vast Spying Tool Continuation

(ConservativeInsider.org) – On December 5, FBI Director Christopher Wray appealed to Congress to renew a surveillance law, emphasizing its critical role in supplying the majority of intelligence reaching the president daily. He made this request during his testimon before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Many Republicans oppose renewing Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which is set to expire on December 31. They argue that it’s part of their criticism against the FBI and the Justice Department, accusing them of targeting conservatives.

Wray emphasized that the surveillance authorities granted by the law are crucial for protecting U.S. national security interests, citing possible Chinese and Iranian threats.

Director Wray highlighted the importance of maintaining surveillance authority against foreign threats. He explained that removing the FBI’s 702 authorities, especially concerning enemy states like Iran and the People’s Republic of China, would be like disarming unilaterally. Wray emphasized that the surveillance law is crucial for detecting foreign terrorist organizations directing attacks within the United States. He committed to being responsible stewards of these authorities and mentioned adopting changes to address compliance issues.

Wray expressed optimism about recent data from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, stating, ‘There is a 98% compliance rate, and the reforms are having the desired effect.’ He also pointed to two recent Justice Department reports that similarly indicate ‘greater than 98% compliance.’

In his opening remarks, Wray highlighted that ‘well-intentioned policymakers had chosen to build a wall preventing access to national security information’ before the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.

He stressed that if we allow 702 to expire or modify it in a way that makes it less effective, it’s akin to building a new wall similar to the one before 9/11.

He said, “As threats from foreign adversaries to our homeland keep changing, the agility and effectiveness of 702 are crucial for the FBI to fulfill its mandate from the American people: keeping them safe in the years ahead. It’s our responsibility to ensure we have the necessary tools for that.”

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