Bush to Congress: Not So Fast

Prez calls on vacation-bound lawmakers to pass reform of eavesdropping law
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Aug 3, 2007 3:40 PM CDT
President Bush, seated, signs the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007, Friday, Aug. 3, 2007, in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. Standing behind the president, from left to are, Sen. Joseph Lieberman,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Congress shouldn't go on vacation until it approves reforms to the current laws on government eavesdropping, President Bush said today. Lawmakers are working on a bill that would update the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act so that the US could spy on terror suspects overseas more effectively without impinging on Americans' privacy rights, but a deal remains distant.

"Time is short," said Bush, who blamed the impasse on Democratic leaders. He has the constitutional authority to call Congress back into session after declaration of a recess, but a spokeswoman said that wasn't on the table: "We cannot imagine that Congress would leave without fixing the problem." Said Chuck Schumer: "I think we're going to be here for a while."