Surveillance

Administration Moves To Quash Challenge to NSA Surveillance

Seeks to keep snooping warrantless and immune to opposition

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Citing week-old Supreme Court precedent, the President Barack Obama administration told a federal judge Wednesday that it should quash a federal lawsuit accusing the government of secretly siphoning Americans' electronic communications to the National Security Agency without warrants.

The San Francisco federal court legal filing was in response to U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White's written question to the government asking what to make of the high court's Feb. 26 decision halting a legal challenge to a once-secret warrantless surveillance project that gobbles up Americans' electronic communications — a program that Congress eventually legalized in 2008 and again in 2012.

In that case, known as Clapper, the justices ruled 5-4 that the American Civil Liberties Union, journalists and human-rights groups that sued to nullify the FISA Amendments Act had no legal standing to sue. The justices ruled the plaintiffs submitted no evidence they were being targeted by that law.

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