Collins Statement on FISA Reform and Reauthorization
WASHINGTON — Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, released the following statement on the USA Freedom Reauthorization Act of 2020, the House’s bipartisan agreement to reauthorize and reform the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA):
“In 2016, our nation’s premier law enforcement agency committed a serious injustice when it weaponized its authority to illegally surveil a U.S. citizen for political purposes. What happened to Carter Page, then-candidate Trump, and the Trump campaign was wrong, and it is our responsibility to ensure it never happens again. The USA Freedom Reauthorization Act achieves that, but our work is far from done.
“While this bill doesn’t include every reform Republicans wanted, this bipartisan agreement ultimately accomplishes our central goal: To reauthorize critical counterterrorism provisions while instituting necessary safeguards to protect the civil liberties of every American. It also protects U.S. citizens from being spied on for political purposes by requiring the Attorney General approve any investigation of an elected official or federal candidate, making it a crime to willfully make a false statement to the court, and increasing penalties for those who abuse the system.
“Congress must continue to conduct vigorous oversight and work with our law enforcement and intelligence communities to restore the American people’s trust in these critical institutions. Our government’s primary duty is to protect its citizens and their constitutional rights – including the right to privacy – and every American should have confidence that we’re fulfilling that role.”