Lankford Votes to Protect Americans’ Privacy, Prevent Terrorism

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today supported reauthorizing three expired provisions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). The three provisions considered today in the Senate concerned the use of wiretaps on multiple phones used by the same person, the collection of business records, and the “lone wolf” provision, which authorizes the FISA court to permit surveillance of an individual who isn’t formally tied to a foreign government. The bill passed the Senate n a vote of 80 to 16.

“FISA reauthorization offers Congress an opportunity to examine and assess both our intelligence community’s tools to prevent terrorism and ensure we protect Americans’ right to privacy and due process,” said Lankford. “I share Oklahomans’ concerns for protecting their Fourth Amendment rights. Each time we reassess FISA and the FISA court (FISC), I evaluate our technology advances and consider how to best equip our intelligence community while protecting against abuses of the process used to obtain a FISA warrant. I am grateful for our intelligence community’s work to keep us safe from attacks, but we must maintain the privacy rights of every American.”

The Senate also considered amendments to this bill that would affect our intelligence community’s ability to collect information and expand involvement in the FISA court process. Lankford supported an amendment to expand the opportunity for amicus or “friend of the court” briefs to inform the FISC in its decisions, particularly as they impact civil liberties. The amendment was adopted.