In a potential breach of legislative oversight, the FBI improperly surveilled U.S. officials, including an unidentified senator and state officials, according to The Daily Caller.

Court documents reveal the federal law enforcement agency abused powers granted under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to spy on the officials.

The FBI’s improper use of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was documented in an opinion from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, according to a report from The Hill.

“The surveillance court outlined three examples where FBI agents conducted searches of ‘sensitive query terms,’ like those of U.S. public officials or candidates, without first seeking approval from the FBI’s deputy director,” according to The Hill.

“In June 2022, an analyst conducted four queries of Section 702 information using the last names of a U.S. Senator and a state senator, without further limitation,” the court explained.

The National Security Division at the Department of Justice determined the FBI did not meet the needed standard for running queries against the two officials, the report added.

The report noted a Staff Operations Specialist ran an October 2022 query using a state judge’s Social Security number after he complained to FBI about alleged civil right violations by a municipal chief of police.

The improper surveillance reportedly came to light from records responding to a Freedom of Information Act request by the American Civil Liberties Union.

The surveillance was enabled by Section 702 of FISA, which gives FBI agents broad surveillance capabilities against foreign targets.

This controversial action by the FBI has ignited calls from lawmakers for an immediate review and restructuring of the agency.


These calls have amplified amid existing allegations of the FBI’s politicization and censorship, urging Congress to implement fundamental reforms to restore the integrity of the Bureau.

FBI Director Chris Wray wrote leaders to the U.S. House and Senate to claim Section 702’s “critical importance to our national security has only grown.”

Wray said it had helped thwart a Chinese effort to hack a “major U.S. transportation hub” in advance of a potential conflict over Taiwan and also frustrated Iranian hackers’ attempts to target a former senior U.S. official.

The current situation casts a shadow on the FBI’s surveillance powers under Section 702, which is due for renewal soon.

While intelligence chiefs have advocated for its continuation, citing its importance in national security and its role in preventing cyberattacks and threats from foreign agents, skepticism remains.

Ironically, Joe Biden voted against the FISA section 702 when he voted “no” as a U.S. senator.

Section 702 “would be a breathtaking and unconstitutional expansion of the President’s powers and it is wholly unnecessary to address the problems the administration has identified,” then-Senator Biden exclaimed.

Biden added he would “not give the President unchecked authority to eavesdrop on whomever he wants in exchange for the vague and hollow assurance that he will protect the civil liberties of the American people.”

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