WASHINGTON – Congressman Darin LaHood (IL-16), a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) and Chair of the Intelligence Committee’s FISA Working Group, revealed today at the HPSCI Worldwide Threats hearing that it is his opinion he was the subject of improper queries by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of information collected under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
Because of these types of FISA abuses, FBI Director Wray insisted in response to questions that new protocols and procedures were put in place in 2021 to address these breaches of FISA. He assured HPSCI that these types of abuses are a problem and agreed they must stop.
LaHood released the following statement:
“The FBI’s inappropriate querying of a duly elected Member of Congress, as stated in the ODNI report footnote, is an egregious violation that not only degrades trust in FISA and the Intelligence Community (IC) but is a threat to the foundational values of our democracy. I have had the opportunity to review the classified summary of this violation, and it is my opinion that the member of Congress that was wrongfully queried multiple times solely by his name was in fact me. The FBI’s actions raise further questions about the serious reforms needed to FISA.
“As a former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Chief Terrorism Prosecutor, and member of the Intelligence Committee, I’ve worked with countless men and women in the FBI and throughout the IC who protect and serve our country with honor. I also recognize the incredible value Section 702 provides in our fight to protect our country and prosecute terrorists and those who wish to harm America. However, many Americans have rightfully lost faith in the FBI and the FISA process. This incident along with other outlined abuses must be a wake-up call for the IC. Reauthorization of Section 702 without reform is a non-starter.
“I remain committed to working with my colleagues on the Intelligence Committee in a bipartisan way to protect the civil liberties of the American people and restore faith in the FBI and Intelligence Community.”
In the ODNI’s 2021 semiannual report on compliance with procedures related to section 702, Footnote 92 outlines the queries of “a US Congressman,” which were not compliant with Section 702 procedures. The multiple non-compliant queries occurred sometime before May 31, 2020.