Bush Adminstration Implies Return to FISA, But Isn't Yet in the Clear

Administration must indicate whether it will fully follow law and whether lawbreakers will be held to account before rule of law can be considered safe

WASHINGTON—People For the American Way President Ralph G. Neas issued the following statement today in response to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ letter regarding the Bush administration’s domestic spying program:

“The Bush administration recognizes that its illegal domestic spying program cannot survive congressional scrutiny, and so it now indicates that it will subject at least some of the program to oversight by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. We welcome the administration’s acknowledgement that this court, which it has illegally ignored for years, actually exists. But without more details of the administration’s revised program, including whether it will seek individualized warrants, it is still unclear whether the administration has yet fully committed itself to following FISA. Congress has a responsibility to provide oversight that ensures FISA is implemented and upholds the rule of law. And, even if the administration begins to follow the law now, which we hope will be the case, past violators of law must still be held to account. Congressional oversight and judicial review are now more important than ever.”

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