House Blocks FISA Spy Bill, Opponents Demand Warrant Requirement

The GOP-led House on Wednesday blocked the passage of a bill which sought to reauthorize Section 702 for five years of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and implement reforms regarding the controversial spying tool.

The vote sank a rule that would have brought the legislation to the floor for discussion, causing a major setback to House Speaker Mike Johnson(R-LA), after the former President Donald Trump had urged lawmakers not to accept the spy program to monitor non U.S. citizens overseas.

19 Republicans voted with all Democrats who voted against moving forward. The final score was 193-228. Ten members did not vote, including four Democrats and six Republicans.

It is unclear what the leadership will do, but it’s possible that lawmakers will opt for another extension without reforms. Section 702 must be reauthorized by April 19, or it will expire.


Many of the legislators who opposed the bill called for the addition of a requirement that government officials obtain a warrant before they can access information about U.S. Citizens, ostensibly to assist in law enforcement. However, this is often entangled with the minoring of foreigners.

There is no shortage in the abuses of spying authorities by a weaponized FBI. Andy Biggs, R-AZ, said “Get a warrant” in a message to X after noting that “3.4 million searches without warrants of Americans’ private communication”. 278,000 searches of American citizens that were not warranted. “19,000 searches that were improperly conducted on donors to a congressional campaign.”

Rep. Pramila Jajapal (D, WA), Chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus also pushed for a “warrant” amendment to “protect” Americans. She asked: “The FISA bill states that the FBI must notify Congressmembers before spying on us. But regular Americans can be monitored without a warrant?”

Trump, who has announced his intention to run for president again, expressed his opposition on Truth Social. “KILL THE FISA. IT WAS ILLEGALLY USE AGAINST ME AND MANY OTHERS. THEY PIED ON MY CAMPAIGN!! “I said his initials, and he agreed.

Since it was revealed that the FBI had spied on Carter Page during his 2016 presidential campaign, the former president has been critical of the surveillance tool. The FBI used an unverified dossier in order to obtain warrants for Section 701, a separate part of FISA.

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-LA, told reporters that he was looking forward to discussing FISA with Trump and said the former president “is not wrong” in his assessment of its misuse.

Johnson said that the FISA 702 Reauthorization Bill contains reforms which would “actually eliminate abuses” targeted at Trump’s campaign in 2016.

There are new criminal and civil penalties, such as those for illegal spying, leaking FISA applications, or using opposition research. “If an FBI agent or attorney is involved in such a thing, they could receive 10 years in jail under the reforms in this package,” he said.

Johnson continued, “That is real teeth.” There are also a few other measures and reforms in the report. The President Trump used this program’s intel to kill terrorists, and we must eliminate the abuses.”