November 06, 2019

Wyden, Heinrich Call for Open Intelligence Committee Hearing on Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act

Sprawling Surveillance Law Must Be Openly Debated in the Senate Intelligence Committee Before Any Closed-Door Vote

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., today called for open hearings in the Senate Intelligence Committee on Section 215 of the Patriot Act before any markup is held.

Wyden and Heinrich are senior members of the Senate Intelligence committee. They have consistently worked for common-sense reforms to surveillance programs to ensure Americans have both security and liberty.

“We appreciate that the Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act authorities expiring at the end of the year,” Wyden and Heinrich said. “The public deserves information about this controversial surveillance law which has impacted hundreds of millions of law-abiding Americans. It is particularly important that whichever committee marks up reauthorization legislation first hold an open hearing so that its members can elicit public information that will form the basis for their votes. This is especially true of the Intelligence Committee, which holds its markups in secret. We therefore call for an open hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee prior to any decision to conduct a markup.”