I … what’s your point?

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Holden serves up some Friday gaggle, wherein Helen defenestrates third-stringer Scott Stanzel on FISA. And rightly so.

Q What right does the President have to tell any company or any person in this country to break the law?

MR. STANZEL: I — what’s your point?

Q No warrants and so forth; that they can go and spy on us without any warrants?

MR. STANZEL: The Protect America Act was passed by Congress last August, as you know, and signed into law. So it is a lawful program that is expiring tomorrow night.

Q Well, if it’s lawful, why would you not get a warrant? It still prevails, doesn’t it?

MR. STANZEL: Because it’s — in 1978, as we talked about, during that period, in 1978, the law, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, was passed, and that law was designed to help us gain intelligence on foreign targets in foreign lands. What we’re not wanting to do here is to extend constitutional protections to terrorists in foreign countries.

[snip]

Q All Americans should be wire-tapped?

MR. STANZEL: Helen, your facts are not correct here. If a foreign terrorist is calling to the United States, we want to know what they’re saying.

Q How do you know they’re a foreign terrorist?

MR. STANZEL: Because they’re in foreign lands and we have to be able to track foreign terrorists in foreign lands and what they’re doing.

Q Any foreigner —

MR. STANZEL: You may want to extend constitutional protections to terrorists, but that is not something that we want to do.

Q You can’t automatically call every foreigner a terrorist.

MR. STANZEL: Jeremy?

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