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tv   Senators Express Frustration Over National Security Officials Answers on...  CSPAN  June 7, 2017 7:30pm-8:01pm EDT

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>> next the senate intelligence committee here's some deputy attorney general rod rosenstein of national intelligence director dan coats come in as a director in michael rogers, and acting fbi director andrew mccabe here to talk about the foreign intelligence surveillance act which is set to expire in december 2017. you can watch the bring in its entirety at a eastern tonight on c-span by jan c-span2 we will show you a portion of the q&a from the hearing. m >> in 201 2012 i mentioned an opening statement director of national intelligence jim clapper and attorney general a eric holder wrote a letter tode congressional leadership asking congress to pass straight brothers asian of fisa come september 2012 statement of administration policy. also urged the same. this would be to director coats and ag rosenstein. has the odni or the department of justice position changed at all since the time of the
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february 2012 letter? >> no. n we strongly support the 2012 letter and request. >> we agree. we agree 100%.and >> this is to admiral rogers anm to director mccabe. since congress last authorized this authority in 2012, again, have the been any instances involving a deliberate or intentional compliance violation? >> not that i'm aware of. >> director mccabe? >> no, sir. >> admiral rogers, this is to you. fisa 702 statutory authorities were to end or even be diminished, what would be the impact on our national security? >> i couldn't generate the same level of insight that the nation, friends and allies around the world count on with respect to counterterrorism, counter proliferation. i could not be able to re-create the insights on the russian efforts to influence the 2016eli
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election cycle.on without seven t two we could not have produced that level of insight. >> this is a jump ball. april 26, 2017 before intelligence court held section 72 -- including sargon and minimization procedures are lawful both under fisa statute and the fourth amendment. as former director comey testified last month the only reason our laws even required t for certification to cover and the quote these non-americans ns who are not in our country, is because their communications transiting u.s.-based networkss and systems. yet others have suggested imposing a fourth amendment warrant requirement on foreigners who are located wotside of the united states. this is really nsa and justice. would imposing such a warrant or requirement impact our national security tools to protect
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american?appy >> i'll be happy to take the ball. yes, it would.nk i think what's important sec recognized is in the absence of section 702 the department of justice intelligence community and every case in which we wanted to obtain foreignel intelligence information, to collect, get the particular target, we do require to obtain a court order. we need to be supported by probable cause. the consequence of that is, number one, it would be very time-consuming because these are very thorough investigation and we produce a lengthy documents. director mccabe and i spent a fair amount about time reading a stack of documents with our career agents and prosecutors in which they have determined that is appropriate to seek those orders. it would be time-consuming. it would require a significant commitment of resources and an addition to require showing probable cause. as you know the probable caution which is required under the constitution in circumstances in which privacy interest -- enters
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america's our stake in it if i buy the fourth amendment. that's a relatively higher threshold that we require for foreign intelligence information.hoho we think it's important that we not apply the fourth amendment constitutional standard to foreigners were not in the united states. >> thank you, mr. rosenstein. admiral rogers, this is to you there's a lot of reporting, much of it inaccurate, that702 characterize section 702 as aan means of targeting u.s. persons. we know that targeting u.s. persons is prohibited. could what is termed reverse targeting. could you explain and clarify the reverse targeting prohibition, and what does it prevent the ic from targeting and collecting? >> so reverse targeting is designed to preclude our ability to bypass the law. what i mean by that? the law is expressly designed to ensure that we are not using this legal framework as aa
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capability to target u.s. persons. reverse targeting is the following scenario. say we were interested in generating insight on u.s. person a period we know that we can't a title i. we can get a fisa warrant. so on the reverse targeting, 50 would be white or you just target a foreign entity that that u.s. person talks to? then you get all the insight you want on the u.s. person but youl will have bypasses the court process. you have bypass the entire legal structure. seven if you specifically reminds us we cannot do that. we cannot use 702 as a vehicle to bypass of the laws or to target u.s. persons. >> can you come last question, can you please clarify for members and for the public what's meant by incidental collection? >> incidental collection, and the statute itself, if you read the law, the statute acknowledges that in the execution of this framework we will encounter u.s. persons.
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we call that incidental collection. that happened under two scenarios. number one, which is about 90% of the time, we are monitoring to foreign individuals and those foreign entities talk about or reference a u.s. person. the second scenario that we do, that we encounter, what we call incidental collection, is where targeting of valid for thecidenl individual. and that valid for an individual, a foreignn intelligence target instance having a conversation with aei u.s. person. that's not the target of our collection but it's not why we are monitoring it in the first place. we are interested in that foreign target. that happened at the times thatr incidental collection. that scenario happens about 10% of the time. >> and were that incidental collection to happen, do you have a procedure in place in both instances to minimize that -- >> we do. the law specifically gives us a set of processes that we had to follow.
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so we do encounter a u.s. person incidentally in the course of our collection, we ask ourselves several questions.urse number one, i would look at potential criminal activity? if we do that we have a requirement to report or to inform the department of justice and the fbi, and they make the determination if it is illegal o or not. we are an intelligent organization not a law enforcement organization. the second question we ask ourselves is it easy in this conversation that would lead us to believe that we're talking about harm to individuals?t in that case we do report. if we think what you do with something that is criminal or there's armed individuals weif reported. other than that unless there's a valid intelligence purpose, depending on the authority in the case of 702 we specifically purge the data. we remove it. we don't put it in to our holdings. if we don't assess there's intelligence value and as a u.s person, we have to purge of the data. d >> thank you for that. >> thank you, mr. chairman. as indicated, a custom question on another matter. director coats and admiral
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rogers, it will mostly be directed at you gentlemen. thank you for your testimony this morning. we all know now that in march then director comey testified about the existence of an ongoing fbi investigation in two links between the trump campaign and the russian government. the reports out in the press that the president, separatelyn appealed to you, admiral rogers, and to you, director coats, to downplay the russia investigation. and now we've got additional reports, i want to give you a chance to confirm or deny these, that the president separately address you, director coats, and ask you to intervene with the director comey, again, to downplay the fbi investigation.n admiral rogers, you draw the short straw. i'm going to start with you. before we get to the substance
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of whether this call a request was made, you vetted very distinguished career, close to 40 years.s in your experience, would be in way typical for president to ask questions or bring up an ongoing fbi investigation, particularly is that investigation concerns associates and individuals thati might be associated with the president's campaign or hist activities? >> today i'm not going to talk about theoretical or are not t going to discuss the specifics of any interactions i may -- >> and --he >> if i could finish. that it may or may not have had with the president of united states but i will make the following comment. 93+ years that i've been directed the national security agency, to the best of my recollection, i have never been directed to do anything i believe to be illegal, immoral, unethical or inappropriate. and to the best of my
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recollection, during the same period of service i do not recall ever feeling pressured to do so. >> in your course prior to the incident that we are going toso discuss, was it in any regular course where the president wouls ask you to comment or intervene in any ongoing fbi investigation? not talking about this or content but is it any other speed is not going to talk about theoretical study. >> libby ask you specifically.y did the president, reports that are out there, ask you in any way, shape, or form to back off or downplay the russians beat a knock we discuss the specifics conversation with the president of the united states but but id by the comment i just made to you. >> do you feel is conversationnd for classified? we know there was an ongoing fbi investigation? >> yes, sir. >> i understand your answer. i'm disappointed with the answer but i'm indicate and i told you i'm going to bring this up. there is, we have facts thatat
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there are other individuals that were unaware of the call that was made to you, aware of the substance of that call, and that there was a memo prepared because of concerns about that corporate will you comment at all? >> i stand by the comets i've made to you today. >> so you will not confirm or deny the existence of a number of? >> i stand by the comments i've made you today. >> i think it will be essentialb mr. chairman, that other >> individuals who serve our country as well with great distinction who was no longer at member of the administration hat a chance to relay his aversion of those facts. again i understand your position, i hope you also understand the enormous need for the american public to know if you have the administration say there is no there there. we have these reports and yet we can't the confirmation that i want to go to you, directororts coats. when you every before staff, yoi
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said adequacy of call before the investigative committee, certainly will provide them witn what i know and what i don't know. i have great respect for you. you served on this committee. i remember as well when we can forget and i was proud to support your confirmation.s you said that you would cooperate with this committee in in aspects that we request of the russian investigation. we now have press reports, and you can write in to rest if they are not true, but we have not once but twice that the president of the united states ask you to either downplay the russian investigation or to directly intervene with what director comey. can you set the records straight about what happened? >> as i responded to some of the question during my confirmation in a second hearing before the committee, i do not feel it's appropriate for me to come in ah
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public session, in which confidential conversations between the president and myself, i don't believe it's appropriate for me to address that in a public session. >> i understand --n >> i stated that before and -- >> you also said, if brought before the investigative committee you would quote certainly provide them with what i know and what i don't know. we are before that investigative committee. >> well, i stand by my previous statement that we are in a public session here at it enougb feel that it is appropriate for me to address confidential information. most of the information i shared with the president obviously is directed toward intelligence matters during our oval briefings every morning at the white house, or most mornings with both president and i am in town. but for intelligence related matters or any other mattersid that have been discussed, it ist
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my belief that it's inappropriate for me to share that with the public. >> i respect all of your service, and i understand and respect your commitment to the administration you are serving.r we will have to bring forward that other individual about what, the memo that may document some of the facts that took e place in the conversation between the president and admiral rogers. in the conversation between the president and admiral rodgers. i would only ask as we go forward, this is my final comment, mr. chairman, that we also have to weigh in here the public's absolute need to know. they're wondering what's going on. they're wondering what type of activities. we see this pattern that without confirmation or denial appears that the president, not once, not twice, but we will hear from director comey tomorrow, this pattern where the president
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seems to want to interfere or down play or halt the ongoing investigation not only of the justice department's taking on but this committee's taking on and i hope as we move forward on this you'll realize the importance that the american public deserves to get the answers to these questions. >> senator, i would like to respond to that if i could. first of all, i'm always -- i told you and i committed to the committee that i would be available to testify before the committee. i don't think this is the appropriate venue to do this in, given that this is an open hearing and a lot of confidential information relative to intelligence or other matters. i just don't feel it's appropriate for me to do that in this situation. and then secondly, when i was asked yesterday to respond to a piece that i was told was going to be written and printed in the "the washington post" this morning, my response to that was
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in my time of service, which is interacting with the president of the united states or anybody in his administration, i have never been pressured, i've never felt pressure to intervene or interfere in any way with shaping intelligence in a political way or in relationship to an ongoing investigation. >> all i can say, director coats, there was a chance here to lay to rest some of these press reports. if the president is asking you to intervene or down play -- you may not have felt pressure, but if he's even asking, to me that is a very relevant piece of information and again, at least in terms of the conversation with admiral rodgers, i think we will get at least some -- another individual's version, but at some point these facts have to come out. >> thank you, senator coats -- director coats and admiral
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rodgers for your testimony with all due respect to my colleague from virginia, i think you have cleared up a substantially your direct testimony that you have never been pressured by anyone including the president of the united states, to do something illegal, immoral or anything else. thank you for that. let's go back to section 702 which is what this hearing was supposed to be all about. it's becoming obvious, i think those of us that work in the intelligence community that we're in a different position than europe is. europe is -- they're risks are obviously very high and they're suffering these attacks on a very regular basis and becoming more regular. so let's talk about our collection efforts versus the european collection efforts and particularly as it relates to section 702. and obviously, we here in the
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media frequently about spats between us and the europeans regarding intelligence matters but we all know that there is a robust communication and cooperation between our european friends and ourselves. so i want to talk about it in -- i want to talk about 702 in that respect. why don't we start director coats with you and i'll throw it up for anybody else that wants to comment on this. how important is 702, the continuation of the section 702 and it's related parts to doing what we have been doing as far as helping the europeans and the europeans helping us and doing the things that we're doing here in america to see that we don't have the kind of situations that have been recently happening in europe. director coats, start with you. >> having just returned a few weeks ago from major capitals in europe and discussing this very issue with my counter parts, i
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throw out the intelligence communities of these various countries, they voluntarily before i could even ask the question expressed extreme gratitude for the ability -- for the information we have been able to share with them relative to threats. numerous threats have been avoid on the basis of collection that we have received through 702 authorities and our notification of them of these impending threats and they have been deterred or intercepted. unfortunately, what has happened just recently, particularly in england, shows that regardless of how good we are, there are bad actors out there that have bypassed the more concentrated large attack efforts and taken
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it either through inspiration or direction from isis or other terrorist groups have chosen to take violent action against the citizens of those countries. the purpose of the trip was to ensure them that we would continue to work and share together. their collection activities, capabilities in many cases are good but in some cases lack the ability that we have and so this ability to share information with them that helps keep their people safe also is highly valued by them. but i don't think we should take for granted that just because europe has been the recent target of these attacks, that the united states is safe from that. we know through intelligence that there's plotting going on and we know that there's lone wolf issues and individuals that are taking instructions from
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isis through social media or that for whatever reason our copycatting what is happening and so that threat exists here also and let me lastly say that the nations i've talked to many of which have been extremely concerned about violating privacy rights have initiated new procedures and legislation and mandates relatively to getting the intelligence agencies better collection because they think they need it to protect their citizens. >> thank you very much. just a few seconds that i've got left, mr. rosenstein, could you -- could you tell me, please -- we get a lot of pushback from the privacy people and we've now haertd testimony that there's been no intentional violation over the ten years. could you tell the american people what's in store for someone who these guys catch
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intentionally misusing 702 since you're the highest ranking member of the department of justice. >> i can assure you, senator, that in the department of justice we treat with great seriousness any allegations or violations regarding classified information so if there were a credible allegation that someone had willfully vie lawsuited section 702 that was in violation of a criminal law, we would prosecutor it. our director mccabe with me shares that commitment. we recognize that we have an obligation to the american people to make sure that these authorities are used appropriately and responsibly, that we comply with the constitution and the laws and the procedures and we're committed to devote whatever resources are required that if there are willful violations people are held accountable for them. >> and this is your commitment and the department of justice's commitment to the american people? >> that's correct. >> senator feinstein? >> thank you, mr. chairman. just a couple of comments on
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section 702. it's a program that i support. it's a program that i believe has worked well. it's a big program. it's an important one. it is a content collection program involving both internet and phone communications, so it can raise concerns about privacy and civil liberties. in the year 2016 there were 106,469 authorized targets out of 3 billion internet users. that's the ratio. the question of unmasking has been raised. it's my understanding that 1,939 u.s. person identities were unmasked in 2016 based on collection that occurred under section 702. so my question is going to be
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the following and i'll ask it all together and hopefully you'll answer it. i would like a description of the certification process and the use of an ameek cuss. i would like your response to the fact that the question -- the program sunsets after five years about raising that sunset versus no sunset because of the privacy concerns, it's my belief there should be a sunset and the use of an amicus which is currently used as part of the certification process and whether that should be continued and form you'llized so admiral, program's under your aus business. >> the department of justice is going to be smarter on the ameek cuss. would you take that piece? >> i'm not sure i am smarter.
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i can tell you this, though, with regard to the question of unmasking and this is actually primary a question not for the department. the department is made by the intelligence agencies if there is a situation where a foreign person has been communicating about an american person and a decision's made whether or not the identity of that american person is necessary in order for that intelligence to be properly used. i think what's important for people to recognize is that's an internal issue. that unmasking is done internally within the cloak of confidentiality within the intelligence community, that's a different issue from leaks. in other words, if somebody's identity is disclosed because it's relevant for intelligence purposes, that's the goal -- >> mr. rosenstein, let me just tell you, i just listen to somebody who should have been known better talking about unmasking in a political sense, that it's done politically and
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that of course is not the case and so what i'm looking for is the definition of how this is done and under what circumstances. >> and i think, senator, because that's really a decision made by the ic not by the department it would be appropriate for them to respond to that. >> i can do that. with respect to unmasking, the following criterias apply. first, for the national security agency, we define in writing who has the authority to unmask a u.s. person identity. that is 20 individuals in 12 different positions. i am one of the 20 in one of those 12 positions, the director. secondly, we outline in writing what the criteria that we'll be applied to a request to unmask, in a report, part of our process under 702 to protect the identity of u.s. persons as part of our minimum maization procedures. when we think we need to u.s. a reference person in a report, we will not use a name or identity.
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we will say u.s. person one, two, three. that report is then promulgated. some of the recipients of that report will come back to us and say i am trying to understand what i'm reading. can you tell us who is person one or person two? you must make the request in writing. number two, the request must be made on the basis of your official duties, not the fact that you just find this report really interesting and you're just curious. it has to tie to your job and finally, i said two but there's a third criteria and that is the basis of the request must be that you need this identity to understand the intelligence you're reading. we apply those three criteria, we do it in writing and one of those 20 individuals then agrees or disagrees. and if we unmask, we go back to that entity who requested it, not every individual who
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received the report, but that one entity who asked for us, we then provide them the u.s. identity and we also remind them the classification of this report and the sensitivity of that identity. by revealing this u.s. person to you, we are doing it to help you understand the intelligence, not, not the, so that you can use that knowledge indiscriminately. >> thank you. >> senator, if i could just add something to that. given the nature of this issue and it's a legitimate question that you've asked. i've talked with my colleagues at nsa and cia, fbi and so forth, and suggesting that we might ask our civil liberties and privacy protection agencies to take a look at this, to see if they're laid out the procedures, are they the right procedures, should we be doing something different, would they
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have recommendations that better protected people from misuse of this. so and they've all agreed to do that, so i think it's a legitimate issue to follow-up on. i've talked to the agency heads about doing so and they're willing to do it. >> if i could, i have an internal review that i have
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tonight on cspa2, transportation secretary elaine chao testifies on the federal aviation administration. president trump is in cincinnati for a speech about infrastructure. late, he the senate considers nominees for fema administration and the deputy director of and the deputy director of next. elaine chao on the future of the federal aviation administration and the control system. other topics in include airline customers and service, drone technology and the implementation of the faa's next generation air transportation system known as next gen. the senate commerce

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