Members of an Obama administration review group will testify on Capitol Hill next month about their recommendations to reform the government's surveillance authority, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced.
Leahy, the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman, said he will hold a Jan. 14 hearing on the group's 303-page report that offers changes to better protect privacy and civil liberties. It will be the committee's first full hearing in 2014.
"The recommendations from the President's Review Group make clear that it is time to recalibrate our government's surveillance programs," Leahy said in a written statement. "Momentum is building for real reform."
The report, prepared by Richard Clarke, Michael Morrell, Geoffrey Stone, Cass Sunstein and Peter Swire, offers 46 recommendations. For example, the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court should not hold the sole authority to appoint judges to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the group said.
The recommendations also include the creation of a public interest advocate to present a vantage other than the position of the U.S. Department of Justice; greater disclosure of opinions; and dividing the authority to appoint surveillance court judges among the Supreme Court justices.