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Press Release of Senator Cantwell

Cantwell Statement on Reports of NSA Collection of Americans’ Phone Call Records

Thursday, May 11,2006

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) made the following statement Thursday regarding media reports that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has been compiling a database of Americans’ personal domestic phone call records:

“Media reports now say that the NSA’s domestic activities are far larger than the White House has previously acknowledged. It is outrageous that the NSA has apparently been secretly collecting telephone records of ordinary Americans to create a massive database, in addition to intercepting actual calls and emails. Congressional checks and balances are needed to make sure that the oversight of our intelligence programs is effective. We need to make sure our intelligence programs and officials are getting the job done of protecting the U.S. and maintaining our national security. The administration must provide full and truthful answers to the questions posed by Congress. We must protect both national security and civil liberties. These principles need not be mutually exclusive: we can and must do both, but the U.S. government must respect the privacy rights of its citizens and abide by the law.”