Administration Paper Defends Spy Program
Detailed Argument Cites War Powers
The Bush administration argued that the president has inherent war powers under the Constitution to order warrantless eavesdropping on the international calls and e-mails of U.S. citizens and others in this country, offering the administration's most detailed legal defense to date of its surveillance program. The Justice Department's lengthy legal analysis also says that if a 1978 law that requires court warrants for domestic eavesdropping is interpreted as blocking the president's powers to protect the country in a time of war, its constitutionality is doubtful and the president's authority supersedes it.
Administration Lays Out Legal Case for Wiretapping Program
WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration Thursday offered its fullest defense of the National Security Agency's domestic eavesdropping program, saying that congressional authorization to defeat Al Qaeda after the Sept. 11 attacks "places the president at the zenith of his powers in authorizing the N.S.A. activities." In a 42-page white paper, the Justice Department expanded on its past arguments in laying out the legal rationale for why the N.S.A. program does not violate federal wiretap law and why the president is the nation's "sole organ" for foreign affairs.
Wexler: Bush's Domestic Spying Programs Must be Investigated
"Like many Americans I was shocked and appalled to learn that our nation's intelligence and military agencies have been spying on Americans at an unprecedented level without even the opportunity for legally required judicial oversight. I am deeply disturbed that the Republican leadership in Congress is turning a blind eye to these developments. And I am proud that Ranking Member Conyers and my fellow Judiciary Democrats refuse to let this silence stand unanswered."
Call Is Out To Impeach Bush
WASHINGTON -- A Democratic congressman, a prominent legal scholar and a self-described target of government surveillance urged Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee on Friday to consider impeaching President George W. Bush for his domestic surveillance program. The recommendation by Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., law scholar Jonathan Turley and Florida-based political activist Richard Hersh emerged at an unofficial Judiciary Committee hearing staged entirely by Democrats.
Congressional Agency Questions Legality of Wiretaps
The Bush administration appears to have violated the National Security Act by limiting its briefings about a warrantless domestic eavesdropping program to congressional leaders, according to a memo from Congress's research arm released yesterday. The Congressional Research Service opinion said that the amended 1947 law requires President Bush to keep all members of the House and Senate intelligence committees "fully and currently informed" of such intelligence activities as the domestic surveillance effort.
Alpharetta Lawyer Sues Bush, NSA
ALPHARETTA, Ga. -- An Alpharetta lawyer has filed a federal lawsuit against President Bush, challenging the constitutionality of the administration's secret wiretapping program, which he says sidesteps other branches of government. Mark Guzzi said Bush has abused his presidential powers in allowing telephone and Internet surveillance, and that the practice violates his First Amendment protection of free speech and Fourth Amendment right to privacy. The National Security Agency and the DSA's director are also named as defendants.
Google Case Raises New Questions About Spying
WASHINGTON - Already on the defensive about its domestic spying program, the Bush administration has alarmed privacy and free-speech advocates by demanding search information from millions of users of Google and other Internet companies. The moves raise questions about how far the government should be allowed to go to probe into American homes. The administration is pushing back hard, defending its surveillance as helping to protect the nation from terrorism and, to a lesser extent, shield minors from pornography. Critics see the moves as an unwarranted expansion of presidential authority.
How Cheney Used the NSA for Domestic Spying Prior to 9/11
In the months before 9/11, thousands of American citizens were inadvertently swept up in wiretaps, had their emails monitored, and were being watched as they surfed the Internet by spies at the super-secret National Security Agency, former NSA and counterterrorism officials said.