– U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin, a member of the Judiciary Committee, released the following statement after Senate Passage of S. 2248, the FISA Bill:
“I am disappointed that the Senate has failed to improve the FISA Bill. The President should have the necessary authority to track terrorists, intercept their communications, and disrupt their plots. And Congress should make needed changes to FISA to account for changes in technology and rulings from the FISA Court involving purely international communications that pass through telecommunications routes in the United States. But we must uphold the Constitution and protect our civil liberties while simultaneously fulfilling our solemn obligation to protect the American people.
“I regret that the Senate rejected amendments that would have strengthened congressional and judicial review including an amendment that I had offered.
“I am hopeful that the House will make much needed improvements in this legislation during the conference, and that I can support balanced legislation that gives the intelligence community the tools it needs to track terrorists and prevent attacks, while maintaining safeguards against abuse of power by the executive branch. I will continue to work to ensure the safety and security of the American people, as well as their civil liberties.”