* Texts of the State Secrets Protection Act bills in Senate and House, plus an analysis of the Senate bill
Here you will find the text of both the Senate and House bills introduced today in connection with reform of the State Secrets Privilege (thank you list members). They are in fact the same bills as were introduced in the last Congress (the original SSPA bill in the Senate is here, for example, and the House bill is here).
These bills present a host of complicated issues, and it would not be right to try to highlight and assess them all in this brief space. So, instead, I’m attaching a 12-page document that I wrote last year, constituting a sort of section-by-section analysis of the Senate bill. It is largely supportive of the bill, but highlights a handful of issues that I think may be problematic or at least require further consideration.
I do not have a similar existing section-by-section analysis for the House bill, though I will note that it is not identical to the Senate bill and does raise some additional concerns (e.g., section 6(c) of the House bill purports to direct judges to give no special deference to the judgment of the executive branch with respect to whether disclosure of the information at issue poses a sufficient risk of harm to warrant application of the privilege).
* State Secrets Protection Act (reintroduced today)
Hot on the heels of DOJ’s continued assertion of the state secrets privilege yesterday in Jeppesen, the leading sponsors of last year’s state secrets-reform legislation today reintroduced the State Secrets Protection Act. From the press release, it sounds much like the earlier version.
I have not yet been able to obtain the text, but when I do I will circulate an analysis (if you have the text, please pass it along!). In the meantime, you can click here for video and prepared testimony from the hearing the Senate Judiciary committee held last February in connection with the original bill.