The Justice Department has sued the state of New Jersey in a lawsuit against State Attorney General Zulima Farber and her deputy Cathleen O’Donnell for their efforts to subpoena telephone companies to obtain NSA call history data.
The suit, filed late Wednesday in federal court in Trenton, relates to the State Attorney General sending subpoenas to the phone companies in order to obtain records and documents relating to the data provided to the NSA. The Justice suit seeks an injunction from the U.S. District Court in Trenton to ensure that the subpoenas from the Attorney General are not enforced. Responses to the subpoenas are due by today.
The Justice Department suit notes that the New Jersey subpoenas "seek disclosure of matters with respect to which the Director of National Intelligence has determined that disclosure…would improperly reveal intelligence sources and methods."
"The United States will be irreparably harmed if the carrier defendants are permitted or are required to disclose sensitive and classified information to the defendants in response to the subpoenas," the suit says.
The Justice Department says states lack the authority to collect information relating to the NSA program and say that they do not have the authority to have the phone carriers comply.