Fact Sheet: Chairman Leahy's FISA Modernization Substitute: A Step Back for Our Nation's Security [November 14, 2007] [open pdf - 134KB]
"In October, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) completed a bill with strong bipartisan support to modernize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA). The SSCI bill would reauthorize core foreign intelligence collection authorities under the Protect America Act (PAA) and provide meaningful liability coverage to companies accused in lawsuits of assisting our Nation in the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001. Prior to the passage of the PAA, outdated provisions of FISA substantially impeded the Intelligence Community's ability to collect valuable foreign intelligence information necessary to protect the Nation. Critical provisions of the PAA expire in less than three months. Accordingly, now is the time for Congress to enact lasting FISA modernization legislation. The SSCI bill is a significant step in the right direction because it reflects careful consideration of the needs of our Intelligence Community given the terrorist risks facing our Nation. Although it is not perfect, the SSCI bill-like the PAA-would keep critical intelligence gaps closed by allowing our Intelligence Community to target foreign terrorists and other intelligence targets believed to be located outside the United States without obtaining prior court approval. In addition, the SSCI bill would provide immunity, in carefully limited circumstances, to electronic communication service providers that face massive lawsuits for allegedly assisting the Intelligence Community after the 9/11 attacks."
White House: http://www.whitehouse.gov/