And There’s Still Talk About Amnesty?

F.B.I. Made ‘Blanket’ Demands for Phone Records

The bureau appears to have used the blanket records demands at least 11 times in 2006 alone as a quick way to clean up mistakes made over several years after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to a letter provided to Congress by a lawyer for an F.B.I. agent who witnessed the missteps.

The F.B.I. has come under fire for its use of so-called national security letters to inappropriately gather records on Americans in terrorism investigations, but details have not previously been disclosed about its use of “blanket” warrants, a one-step operation used to justify the collection of hundreds of phone and e-mail records at a time.

See also Report on F.B.I. Use of Personal Data on the DoJ Inspector General report: A Review of the FBI’s Use of National Security Letters: Assessment of Corrective Actions and Examination of NSL Usage in 2006 (local copy)

Note: HR 3773 (in particular H.Res. 1041) is up for a House vote this afternoon, where tough sledding is anticipated in the face of the President’s continued (pdf) misrepresentation (pdf) of what the bill actually says.