STATEMENT OF DAVID S. KRISMr. Chairman and Members of the Committee:
ASSOCIATE DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
SENATE SELECT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE
CONCERNING LEGISLATIVE PROPOSALS TO RESPOND TO TERRORISM
SEPTEMBER 24, 2001
Thank you for the opportunity to discuss proposed legislative responses to the acts of terrorism inflicted on our country on September 11.
My name is David Kris. I am an Associate Deputy Attorney General at the Department of Justice. My portfolio includes national security policy and FISA, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This is my first appearance before this Committee, and I appreciate the opportunity to present the Department's views. With me is Larry Parkinson, the General Counsel of the FBI.
The Attorney General and the Deputy Attorney General both wanted to be here today. Unfortunately, a conflicting prior commitment to testify before the House Judiciary Committee, and their operational duties in connection with this investigation, have made that impossible. Mr. Chairman, they send their apologies, and their hope that you, Vice Chairman Shelby, and other Members of the Committee will accept their heartfelt appreciation for your extraordinary leadership at this critical time.
In particular, Mr. Chairman, I want to thank you for the Committee's expeditious consideration of our request for a hearing on the Administration's proposal. For that, and the collaborative spirit that you have shown throughout this process, we are deeply grateful. The Department has long enjoyed a close working relationship with this Committee, and we look forward to its continuation.
We are also grateful that you have invited our views on the bill that you and Senator Feinstein introduced three days ago. I know you share our goal of giving the law enforcement and intelligence communities the tools they need to stop terrorists before they can strike again.
Mr. Parkinson and I are prepared to discuss in detail the specific provisions of the Administration's proposal that you previously identified for us based on the Committee's jurisdiction. That proposal obviously remains our top priority. Due to the short time frame, however, and the operational and policy duties that Mr.Parkinson and I must carry out, we have not had an opportunity to fully review the provisions in your bill. While I believe we can endorse the substance of some of your bill's provisions, and I know that we share common goals, we would like to reserve some of our comments on the particulars of the language as it is currently drafted. The Department looks forward to working with the Committee as necessary to ensure that we achieve the goals that all of us seek. We are therefore prepared to answer general questions on provisions in the Graham-Feinstein bill to the extent that there is a cleared Administration position on them, and we pledge to work with you on all of the bill's provisions to achieve our common goals of finding those responsible for the recent terrorist attacks and preventing future attacks.
Again, thank you for your outstanding leadership and commitment in holding this hearing, and for focusing the Nation on the needs of the intelligence and law enforcement communities to fight aggressively - and consistent with protection of civil liberties - the threat that terrorism poses to us and to the world.