Text: S.1130 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in Senate (06/11/2013)

 
[Congressional Bills 113th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[S. 1130 Introduced in Senate (IS)]

113th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                S. 1130

 To require the Attorney General to disclose each decision, order, or 
  opinion of a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that includes 
 significant legal interpretation of section 501 or 702 of the Foreign 
Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 unless such disclosure is not in 
   the national security interest of the United States and for other 
                               purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                             June 11, 2013

 Mr. Merkley (for himself, Mr. Lee, Mr. Heller, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Begich, 
   Mr. Franken, Mr. Tester, Mr. Wyden, Mr. Blumenthal, and Mr. Paul) 
introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the 
                       Committee on the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
 To require the Attorney General to disclose each decision, order, or 
  opinion of a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that includes 
 significant legal interpretation of section 501 or 702 of the Foreign 
Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 unless such disclosure is not in 
   the national security interest of the United States and for other 
                               purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Ending Secret Law Act''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds the following:
            (1) Secret law is inconsistent with democratic governance. 
        In order for the rule of law to prevail, the requirements of 
        the law must be publicly discoverable.
            (2) The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh 
        Circuit stated in 1998 that the ``idea of secret laws is 
        repugnant''.
            (3) The open publication of laws and directives is a 
        defining characteristic of government of the United States. The 
        first Congress of the United States mandated that every ``law, 
        order, resolution, and vote [shall] be published in at least 
        three of the public newspapers printed within the United 
        States''.
            (4) The practice of withholding decisions of the Foreign 
        Intelligence Surveillance Court is at odds with the United 
        States tradition of open publication of law.
            (5) The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court 
        acknowledges that such Court has issued legally significant 
        interpretations of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 
        1978 (50 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.) that are not accessible to the 
        public.
            (6) The exercise of surveillance authorities under the 
        Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1801 
        et seq.), as interpreted by secret court opinions, potentially 
        implicates the communications of United States persons who are 
        necessarily unaware of such surveillance.
            (7) Section 501 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance 
        Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1861), as amended by section 215 of the 
        USA PATRIOT Act (Public Law 107-56; 115 Stat. 287), authorizes 
        the Federal Bureau of Investigation to require the production 
        of ``any tangible things'' and the extent of such authority, as 
        interpreted by secret court opinions, has been concealed from 
        the knowledge and awareness of the people of the United States.
            (8) In 2010, the Department of Justice and the Office of 
        the Director of National Intelligence established a process to 
        review and declassify opinions of the Foreign Intelligence 
        Surveillance Court, but more than two years later no 
        declassifications have been made.

SEC. 3. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that each decision, order, or opinion 
issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court or the Foreign 
Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review that includes significant 
construction or interpretation of section 501 or section 702 of the 
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1861 and 
1881a) should be declassified in a manner consistent with the 
protection of national security, intelligence sources and methods, and 
other properly classified and sensitive information.

SEC. 4. REQUIREMENT FOR DISCLOSURE OF DECISIONS, ORDERS, AND OPINIONS 
              OF THE FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE COURT.

    (a) Section 501.--
            (1) In general.--Section 501 of the Foreign Intelligence 
        Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1861) is amended by adding 
        at the end the following:
    ``(i) Disclosure of Decisions.--
            ``(1) Decision defined.--In this subsection, the term 
        `decision' means any decision, order, or opinion issued by the 
        Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court or the Foreign 
        Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review that includes 
        significant construction or interpretation of this section.
            ``(2) Requirement for disclosure.--Subject to paragraphs 
        (3) and (4), the Attorney General shall declassify and make 
        available to the public--
                    ``(A) each decision that is required to be 
                submitted to committees of Congress under section 
                601(c), not later than 45 days after such opinion is 
                issued; and
                    ``(B) each decision issued prior to the date of the 
                enactment of the Ending Secret Law Act that was 
                required to be submitted to committees of Congress 
                under section 601(c), not later than 180 days after 
                such date of enactment.
            ``(3) Unclassified summaries.--Notwithstanding paragraph 
        (2) and subject to paragraph (4), if the Attorney General makes 
        a determination that a decision may not be declassified and 
        made available in a manner that protects the national security 
        of the United States, including methods or sources related to 
        national security, the Attorney General shall release an 
        unclassified summary of such decision.
            ``(4) Unclassified report.--Notwithstanding paragraphs (2) 
        and (3), if the Attorney General makes a determination that any 
        decision may not be declassified under paragraph (2) and an 
        unclassified summary of such decision may not be made available 
        under paragraph (3), the Attorney General shall make available 
        to the public an unclassified report on the status of the 
        internal deliberations and process regarding the 
        declassification by personnel of Executive branch of such 
        decisions. Such report shall include--
                    ``(A) an estimate of the number of decisions that 
                will be declassified at the end of such deliberations; 
                and
                    ``(B) an estimate of the number of decisions that, 
                through a determination by the Attorney General, shall 
                remain classified to protect the national security of 
                the United States.''.
            (2) Section 702.--Section 702(l) of the Foreign 
        Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (50 U.S.C. 1881a(l)) is 
        amended by adding at the end the following:
            ``(4) Disclosure of decisions.--
                    ``(A) Decision defined.--In this paragraph, the 
                term `decision' means any decision, order, or opinion 
                issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court 
                or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of 
                Review that includes significant construction or 
                interpretation of this section.
                    ``(B) Requirement for disclosure.--Subject to 
                subparagraphs (C) and (D), the Attorney General shall 
                declassify and make available to the public--
                            ``(i) each decision that is required to be 
                        submitted to committees of Congress under 
                        section 601(c), not later than 45 days after 
                        such opinion is issued; and
                            ``(ii) each decision issued prior to the 
                        date of the enactment of the Ending Secret Law 
                        Act that was required to be submitted to 
                        committees of Congress under section 601(c), 
                        not later than 180 days after such date of 
                        enactment.
                    ``(C) Unclassified summaries.--Notwithstanding 
                subparagraph (B) and subject to subparagraph (D), if 
                the Attorney General makes a determination that a 
                decision may not be declassified and made available in 
                a manner that protects the national security of the 
                United States, including methods or sources related to 
                national security, the Attorney General shall release 
                an unclassified summary of such decision.
                    ``(D) Unclassified report.--Notwithstanding 
                subparagraphs (B) and (C), if the Attorney General 
                makes a determination that any decision may not be 
                declassified under subparagraph (B) and an unclassified 
                summary of such decision may not be made available 
                under subparagraph (C), the Attorney General shall make 
                available to the public an unclassified report on the 
                status of the internal deliberations and process 
                regarding the declassification by personnel of 
                Executive branch of such decisions. Such report shall 
                include--
                            ``(i) an estimate of the number of 
                        decisions that will be declassified at the end 
                        of such deliberations; and
                            ``(ii) an estimate of the number of 
                        decisions that, through a determination by the 
                        Attorney General, shall remain classified to 
                        protect the national security of the United 
                        States.''.
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