Sen. Mark Udall on 'This Week'

The Democratic Colorado senator on privacy vs. security over NSA surveillance.
5:01 | 06/09/13

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Transcript for Sen. Mark Udall on 'This Week'
Now to the senator who said he did everything short of leaking classified information. Here's mark udall on the senate floor more than two years. Zwl they can target individuals with no connection to terrorist organizations. They can collect business records on law-abiding americans who have no connection to terrorism. And senator udall joins us from colorado this morning, is everything we're learning this week consistent with what you knew then? It is, george. And as you pointed out, I tried to draw attention to what was happening over two years ago. I'm not happy that we have had leaksened these leaks are concerning. I think it's the opportunity to have the limits of surveillance. How we create transparency and how we protect americans' privacy. What is your main concern here? Because the president has come out and said that the programs are protected. Here's the president on friday. They're very focused. In the abstract, you can complain about big brother and how this is a potential pram run amok. When you look at the details. You don't believe the right balance has been struck? I don't. My main concern is that americans don't know the extent to what they're being surveilled. When you make calls, where you make calls to, who you're talking to, I think that's private information. I think if the government is gathering that, american people ought to know it. Frankly, I think we ought to reopen the patriot act and put some limits on data that the national security administration is collecting. What kind of limits exactly? They're not allowed to continue the targeting of any individual unless they have probable cause. Unless they developed some information to give them the reason to continue tracking. My concern is, look you know what went through a contract with your phone company, that they're going to collect this data. The phone company can't arrest you, prosecute you and put you in jail. Although it sounds simple can lead to a lot of additional information. I just draw the line a little bit differently than the president does. We have to remember we're in a war against terrorists and terrorism remains a real threat. I think we have to queue the bill of rights. The fourth amerndment ought to be important to us and it ought to remain sacred. There ought to be a balance here. Let's open this up. I don't think the american public knew the extent to which they were being surveilled. Mr. Senator, the president has said this has been fully debated and authorized by the congress. It has been, george, but in a limited way, if I might make that point. That's why I want to reopen the patriot act, now that this information is more available. They want to know more. That's my point, let's have a debate here. Let's look at what's really happening. It's what I was trying to draw attention to years ago. It makes me uneasy. I think it's a violation of our privacy. Let's take a further look at this. Do you think the administration has been straight with the congress in their testimony? I -- in general I do. And look, this is the law but the way the law is being interpreted has really concerned me. The law has been interpreted in a secret way. That's what I have been calling for, let's have full disclosure of how this law is being applied. This isn't a scandal but this is deeply concerning to me and a lot of americans. Lot of my colleagues in the senate on both sides of the aisle. And do you believe, though, that the program has been effective? We have chairman mike rogers coming up, who said that this program has helped stop terrorists. The new york subway plot in 2009 could have been stopped by this program. George, I'm not convinced. There are two programs being discussed. The p.R.I.S.M., Article 702 in the law has been very effective. It grabs content, photographs and e-mails. The 215 provisions collecting all of the medi data. So, I know these claims were being made. But that's all the more reason to have a debate to share this information and determine whether or not we should be electing records. To me it's a violation of our privacy, particularly if it's done in ways we don't know about. Senator udall, thank you. Thank you for having me on.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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