FC: House Judiciary chairman on FBI powers: "deeply troubled"

From: Declan McCullagh (declanat_private)
Date: Sun Jun 02 2002 - 10:12:05 PDT

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    Note there is a difference between Rep. Sensenbrenner being "deeply 
    troubled" about the substance of the FBI's new authority -- compared to the 
    mechanism by which the bureau got it. If we take his statement below at 
    face value, he's mostly concerned about the procedure, not the new powers 
    Also see Sen. Leahy's FBI Reform Act statement:
    Previous Politech message:
    "Ashcroft on new investigation rules: FBI has been 'frustrated'"
    U.S. House of Representatives
    Committee on the Judiciary
    F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr., Chairman
    News Advisory
    For immediate 
    Contact: Terry Shawn
    May 31, 
    Chairman Sensenbrenner Reacts to Revised Investigative Guidelines for the FBI
    WASHINGTON, D.C. - House Judiciary Committee Chairman F. James 
    Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) issued the following statement today in response to 
    Attorney General John Ashcroft's announcement of revised investigative 
    guidelines for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
    "Yesterday, Attorney General John Ashcroft and Federal Bureau of 
    Investigation Director Robert Mueller announced new guidelines for the 
    conduct of criminal investigations by the FBI. I am deeply troubled by the 
    Department of Justice's failure to consult with Congress over changes to 
    investigative policies that have been in place for more than 20 years."
    "The House Judiciary Committee has a history of working with the FBI on 
    these guidelines. In the past, I supported them as an important limitation 
    on FBI investigative practices to prevent the abuses of the 1960s and 
    1970s. Many believed at the time that these guidelines were essential to 
    restore faith in the FBI."
    "These important safeguards of American privacy and freedom should not be 
    significantly altered without careful consideration and a full explanation 
    of the reasons for any changes. I look forward to hearing the Attorney 
    General's and the FBI Director's testimony before the Judiciary Committee 
    in the near future regarding the decision to revise these guidelines."
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