ACLU: Congress Must Investigate Claims Gonzales Shut Down NSA Review to Escape Scrutiny
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON – Following reports by the National Journal that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales advised President Bush to shut down an internal review of the National Security Agency’s warrantless surveillance program due to the possibility that his own actions would be scrutinized, the American Civil Liberties Union today renewed its call for a special prosecutor to be appointed to investigate the program.
The following may be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:
“If these reports are true, they raise serious questions about the attorney general’s willingness to place himself and his actions above the law and above rebuke. In America, no one is above the law. And, no one – certainly not the attorney general – should interfere with an investigation into whether laws have been broken and the Constitution subverted.
“The decision to suspend the investigation was unprecedented. The Office of Professional Responsibility’s top lawyer said that office has never before been prevented from investigating, even when dealing with highly classified information. This latest revelation shows again why the attorney general must appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the program. The American people and the Constitution deserve an independent investigator who can, and will, get to the truth.
“We applaud Senators Durbin, Kennedy, Feingold and Schumer for immediately asking the attorney general to clarify his actions regarding the OPR investigation. We urge Congress to stand for the Constitution and conduct vigorous oversight on this issue.”
For more on the ACLU’s concerns with the NSA warrantless surveillance program, go to: www.aclu.org/nsaspying
Every month, you'll receive regular roundups of the most important civil rights and civil liberties developments. Remember: a well-informed citizenry is the best defense against tyranny.
The latest in National Security
The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.
Learn More About National Security
The ACLU’s National Security Project is dedicated to ensuring that U.S. national security policies and practices are consistent with the Constitution, civil liberties, and human rights.