Reprinted from www.emptywheel.net
Marco Rubio, who is running for President as an authoritarian, claims that "There is not a single documented case of abuse of this program."
He's not alone. One after another defender of the dragnet make such claims. FBI witnesses who were asked specifically about abuses in 2011 claimed FBI did not know of any abuses (even though FBI Director Robert Mueller had had to justify FBI's use of the program to get it turned back on after abuses discovered in 2009).
Comment -- Russ Feingold said that Section 215 authorities have been abused. How does the FBI respond to that accusation?
A -- To the FBI's knowledge, those authorities have not been abused.
Though Section 215 boosters tend to get sort of squishy on their vocabulary, changing language about whether this was illegal, unconstitutional, or abusive.
Here's what we actually know about the abuses, illegality, and unconstitutionality of Section 215, both the phone dragnet program and Section 215 more generally.
First, here's what judges have said about the program: