During an appearance on “Fox News Sunday,” Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said he was looking into filing a class-action lawsuit against the federal government over the National Security Agency’s surveillance of phone records and Internet data. Paul is hoping the legal challenge will make its way to the nation’s highest tribunal.
“I’m going to be seeing if I can challenge this at the Supreme Court level. I’m going to be asking the Internet providers and all of the phone companies; ask your customers to join me in a class-action lawsuit,” he said, adding, “If we get 10 million Americans saying, ‘We don’t want our phone records looked at’ then maybe someone will wake up and things will change in Washington.”
The controversy began this week after multiple published reports said the NSA has been mining the phone and Internet records of both U.S. citizens and people around the world in a quest to prevent terrorist attacks.
President Obama addressed the issue Friday, saying the information gathered is extremely broad and that the government isn’t monitoring the content of the data or people’s names unless they have probable cause and a warrant.
But Paul said this data collection is by no means a modest invasion of privacy and in fact may even weaken America’s counterterrorism operations.
“We are looking through so much data that I think it makes our fight against terrorism worse,” Paul said.