July 16, 2009
Thank you for contacting me regarding the State Secret Protection Act of 2009 (H.R. 984). I appreciate hearing from you and welcome the opportunity to respond.
I certainly understand your concerns regarding protection of classified information for security of the Unites States and the safety of American lives. As you may know, this legislation requires that in order for government to protect any information sought for use in civil legal proceedings, the government would be required to prove that public disclosure of that information would likely cause harm to national defense or diplomatic relations. Additionally, the bill establishes procedures for review by courts of such information which the government wishes to protect. The State Secret Protection Act of 2009 was reviewed by the House Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties and returned to the full Committee on the Judiciary for further consideration. I will certainly keep your thoughts in mind should this legislation come before the full House for a vote.
Again, thank you for taking the time to share your concerns with me. I realize some time has passed since you sent your original correspondence, and I want to extend my sincere apologies for not getting in touch with you sooner. I receive a sizable amount of mail each day, which sometimes prevents swift reply.
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