The Latest on the House and reauthorization of a key foreign intelligence collection program (all times local):
The U.S. intelligence services are enacting a mandate from President Donald Trump to establish guidelines on “unmasking” the identities of U.S. citizens in intelligence reports.
Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats on Thursday signed a measure that for the first time established guidance for the entire intelligence community. It directs civilian and military agencies to establish plans within 90 days in consultation with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of Defense James Mattis.
The measure aims to more tightly restrict how the names of Americans kept secret in intelligence reports can be revealed, particularly during presidential transitions. The move follows unsubstantiated charges by President Donald Trump that his predecessor’s administration spied on his campaign and improperly “unmasked” the identities of his associates during the 2016 presidential campaign and transition.
The House has passed a bill to reauthorize a key foreign intelligence collection program with an important tweak. It requires the FBI to get a warrant if it wants to view the contents of Americans’ communications swept up in the process.
The House on Thursday passed what is known as Section 702 of a program that allows spy agencies to collect information on foreign targets abroad. The bill passed 256-164. The Senate must still pass the bill before it is sent to the White House for the president’s signature.
Earlier, the House rejected a measure to impose stiffer restrictions on the FBI. It would have required the FBI to get a warrant to continue even querying the database when Americans are involved.