Monday, August 12, 2013


As I've noted before, Congress is mostly unable to evaluate the NSA's procedures and McClatchy reports that it's also unwilling to disclose relevant information about American intelligent agencies.
Senate intelligence panel could seek to declassify documents; it just doesn’t

By Ali Watkins | McClatchy Washington Bureau
Posted on Monday, August 12, 2013

The Senate established the Intelligence Committee to replace the so-called Church Committee, chaired by the late Sen. Frank Church, D-Idaho.

As a part of this oversight, Section 8 of the resolution lays out a process by which a member of the Intelligence Committee may seek the declassification of information that he or she thinks is of public interest, even if the executive branch labels the material top secret.

“The select committee may, subject to the provisions of this section, disclose publicly any information in the possession of such committee after a determination by such committee that the public interest would be served by such disclosure,” the section reads.

The process begins with a committee vote. If a majority of members vote to declassify, and the executive branch continues to resist, the issue is taken to the Senate floor. The chamber can do one of three things: Approve the disclosure, disapprove the disclosure or allow the Intelligence Committee to make the decision.

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