In Support of the Intelligence Authorization Bill

I thank the gentleman for yielding.

Madam Chair, I rise in support of the intelligence authorization bill. As a member of the committee, I am confident it provides our intelligence community with the tools it needs to keep our country safe. There are two aspects of the bill that I would like to highlight.

First, the bill includes the most substantial reform to the oversight relationship between Congress and the executive branch in a generation. The bill requires that the President provides all notifications in writing and to maintain a record of briefings. It requires the President to inform all members of the Intelligence Committees when a Gang of Eight briefing is conducted, giving members who are not in the Gang of Eight the awareness they need to prevent abuse of the process. It requires the President to open up the briefing to the full committee after 180 days unless the Director of National Intelligence recertifies that the standards of the statute are still met.

Second, the bill makes critical investments in our overhead infrastructure and architecture. This is essential to our intelligence capability and wouldn't be possible without the work of some of the most brilliant minds in the country, like the scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

We are not giving the administration a blank check. It is imperative that our major acquisitions stay on budget and on schedule. Resources are scarce, and we cannot allow a handful of programs to spin out of control. The committee will keep a close eye on those programs.