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Gonzales Caught Lying to Congress About Patriot Act Abuses of Power

This post, written by Will Menaker, originally appeared on Raw Story

Today's Washington Post reports that Attorney general Alberto Gonzales was given a report detailing FBI abuses of power six days before testifying to Congress where he sought to renew the Patriot Act. In front of the Senate Intelligence Committee he claimed he knew of no wrongdoing or abuse of power, and that the Patriot Act was free of problems, despite the reports of numerous violations of the law and FBI protocol.

The report detailed acts of unauthorized surveillance, improper searches, and other procedural and legal breaches of civil rights and privacy laws. Gonzales was also briefed on the abuse of the anti-terror tool known as the national security letter as early as 2005, well before the Justice Department's inspector general made these violations public.

Nonetheless, when the stinging IG report was issued, Gonzales reacted with surprise in public saying, "I was upset when I learned this, as was Director Mueller. To say that I am concerned about what has been revealed in this report would be an enormous understatement."

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