By Rebecca Shabad - 01/16/14 11:42 AM EST
Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick LeahySenate Dems rip GOP on immigration ruling Bernie Sanders’s awkward return to the Senate Senate heads toward internet surveillance fight MORE (D-Vt.) said Thursday the National Security Agency’s claim that it is “very protective” of Americans’ information is “baloney.”
President Obama, the NSA's director, Gen. Keith Alexander, and lawmakers such as House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) have said the program has helped stop at least 50 terrorist plots.
“The other thing that keeps striking me is that [the NSA says] ‘we’re very protective of this information.’ Baloney,” Leahy said. “They weren’t protective enough that they could stop a sub-contractor, Mr. Snowden, from stealing millions of their biggest secrets. To this day, they still don’t know all of what he’s stolen.”
Leahy has introduced several bills that would change the NSA’s operations. One bill, the USA Freedom Act, would end the NSA’s metadata program.