President Trump told lawmakers that he will not support a long-term extension of key intelligence programs without reforms to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
Trump held a private meeting with Attorney General William Bar, Republican members of Congress, and GOP leadership on Tuesday about extending provisions of the USA Freedom Act. The meeting was focused on discussing certain provisions of the law that expire on March 15, including surveillance of lone-wolf terrorists, roving wiretaps, and a program that permits requests for metadata from phone records.
During the meeting, Barr and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed support for the concept of a clean extension of the intelligence programs, sources told the Hill. However, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said the president didn’t agree and “pushed back very vigorously” on an extension without comprehensive FISA reforms.
“It was a spirited discussion. The president made it exceedingly clear that he will not accept a clean reauthorization … without real reform,” Paul said after the meeting. Republican aides confirmed that Trump told those at the meeting he wouldn’t support an extension without added reforms.