As the wiretap bill moves closer to passage it becomes increasingly unclear why any new law is necessary. The new additions to the law make clear that court review of the program would not give blanket authorization for the surveillance, and would require procedures to prevent the surveillance from targetting American citizens without a warrant. The problem is that we have a law that does those things already. FISA provides these same protections, and is less “murky” in the words of former FBI and CIA director William H. Webster, former FBI director William Sessions, and 12 other former national security officials.
What we need is a clear statement of who is targeted by this surveillance and how they are chosen, at least roughly speaking. Terrorists already expect they are under surveillance, but innocent Americans deserve to know whether they are being surveilled also.