Biden says NSA shows 'pattern of excess'

WASHINGTON, May 14 (UPI) -- Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del., told "ABC'S This Week" the Bush administration's "pattern of excess" might have extended into collecting Americans' phone records.

Most experts agree that government collection of millions of Americans' private phone records probably does not violate the Fourth Amendment, so it is constitutional, said "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos. But he asked whether collection of the date violates telecommunications and other privacy statutes.


"Technology has overtaken our past laws and these new technologies have changed everything," said Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb.

"Rather than come to us and tell us how to amend the law to provide for them being able to do what they want to do," Biden said, "they go ahead and just go ahead without any congressional oversight of any consequence and without court oversight.

"They basically say, 'Trust us,'" Biden said.

"The American people need to be assured that their government is, in fact, following the law," said Hagel. "Not just protecting the security interests of our country, but also the constitutional rights of individual Americans.

"We can do both," Hagel said.


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