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Bush threatens veto of bill mandating increased intelligence oversight

[JURIST] The White House issued a policy statement [PDF text] Thursday expressing the administration's strong opposition to the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007 [S 372 summary] Thursday, and threatening presidential veto of the bill unless the Democratic-controlled Congress alters provisions which would increase congressional oversight of intelligence activities. The legislation, introduced by Senate Select Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) [official profile] requires increased transparency on annual intelligence spending, mandatory disclosure of intelligence documents within 15 days of a request unless privilege applies, and a requirement that directors of the National Security Agency, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, National Reconnaissance Office, and the Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency [official websites] be subject to Senate confirmation. The proposed bill also calls for the creation of a new inspector general, who would have the authority to direct internal oversight divisions within any of the 16 intelligence agencies under the supervision of the Director of National Intelligence [official website].

The Bush administration has characterized the contested provisions as being "inconsistent with the need for the effective conduct of intelligence activities," and threatening the security of "intelligence sources, methods, and activities from unauthorized disclosure." AP has more.

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