GOP lawmaker asks GAO to review overclassification

Hunter said that he wants the GAO to look at the degree to which material is classified that doesn’t impact national security, whether reducing classification requirements would winnow down the 5 million people who current have security clearances and the degree to which excessive classification harms information sharing.

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The government’s classification system is just one area receiving renewed scrutiny from lawmakers in the wake of the NSA disclosures.

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) last week said she is preparing to call hearings to look at how Snowden was able to access the top-secret data he leaked to The Guardian and The Washington Post.

Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) are holding a joint Senate Homeland Security subcommittee hearing Thursday on agencies' vetting of government employees' and contractors' security clearances.

— This story was updated at 3:27 p.m.