Outline of Problems with Leaks Provisions in the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY2013 (S. 3454)

Following is a section-by-section analysis of key provisions of Title V of S. 3454 that most directly impact newsreporting.  This analysis was originally prepared on July 29, 2012.

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A full Senate vote on the leaks provisions contained in Title V of the Intelligence Authorization Act for  Fiscal 2013 (S. 3454) is premature. The Senate Intelligence Committee approved the provisions on July 24 and about a week later released the text to the public.[1]  While the Committee appropriately avoided changes to the Espionage Statutes, the provisions represent far-reaching changes that affect newsgathering and the people’s right to know.  Congress and the public should have time prior to Senate action to debate the appropriateness of these changes, and, most importantly, to allow Congress to address flaws in the bill.  This legislation is not ready to be written into law.

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SGI letter to Senate Intelligence Commmittee regarding S. 3454 (Intelligence Authorization Act for FY3013)

The Sunshine in Government Initiative remains deeply concerned that legislation, passed by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on July 24, 2012, will significantly curtail what the public learns about news events and what the government is doing in the public’s name.  On August 10, 2012, the SGI sent to the Committee the following letter and analysis of certain sections of Title V of the Senate Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal 2013 (S. 3454):

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