Heinrich is a cosponsor of the Uniting and Strengthening America by Reforming and Improving the Government's High-Tech Surveillance (USA RIGHTS) Act, introduced by U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.), that reforms Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to end warrantless backdoor searches of Americans' calls, emails, and other communications that are routinely swept up under a program created to spy on foreign targets.
"Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was originally meant to collect the communications of foreign targets, which is without controversy".
The law renews for six years and with minimal changes the NSA's programme, which collects information from foreigners overseas but incidentally gathers an unknown amount of communications belonging to Americans.
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But even as he signed the renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act into law, he insisted that it was different from the existing version he claims President Barack Obama used to spy on him. "I will always do the right thing for our country and put the safety of the American people first!"
The intelligence community says a program is a significant tool in recognizing and upsetting terror plots. As described by the ACLU: "the NSA searches through the contents of Americans' worldwide communications - in bulk and without a warrant - and it retains even those that are merely about its targets".
The White House, U.S. intelligence agencies and congressional Republican leaders have said the program is indispensable to national security, vital to protecting U.S. allies and needs little or no revision. He noted that the law allows intelligence agencies to target only non-U.S. citizens outside the United States.