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Rep. Van Drew Tells Newsmax: Agencies Aim to Target Americans

N.J.'s Jeff Van Drew (Credits: New Jersey Globe)

Rep. Jeff Van Drew, R-N.J., expressed strong opposition to the recent reauthorization of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), which he described as an “abomination” during his appearance on Newsmax’s “The Chris Salcedo Show.”

His criticism stems from the failure to pass an amendment that would have ended warrantless surveillance of Americans, a provision that many, including Van Drew, find problematic given the FBI’s reported misuse of the surveillance capabilities.

Van Drew’s concerns highlight a serious issue with the current FISA legislation: the exemption of Congress from the rules that apply to the general public. This exemption has fueled distrust and criticism among lawmakers and the public alike.

Rep. Jeff Van Drew (Credits: Philadelphia Inquirer)

Van Drew emphasized that this double standard is especially alarming because it suggests a degree of protection for lawmakers that is not afforded to ordinary American citizens.

The debate over FISA has been intense, with critics arguing that the law’s provisions for warrantless surveillance violate privacy rights and lack sufficient checks to prevent abuse. The fact that the FBI has been accused of illegally accessing information nearly 278,000 times without judicial oversight adds weight to these concerns.

Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., echoed Van Drew’s sentiments in a post on X (formerly Twitter), expressing his disgust at the bill’s passage and the continued allowance of warrantless searches of Americans while explicitly exempting Congress.

Jeff Van Drew (Credits: WHYY)

These criticisms underscore a broader debate about surveillance, privacy, and civil liberties in the United States—a debate that has been ongoing since the inception of the FISA law and has intensified with each reauthorization.

The concerns raised by Van Drew and Burchett reflect unease about the potential for government overreach and the need for more stringent safeguards to protect citizens’ privacy rights.

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