Dems demand answers over claims DHS compiled intelligence reports on journalists in Portland

Written by Foxnews | Source: Foxnews | August 01, 2020 04:24 PM

House Democrats on Saturday said they want answers about reports that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) compiled intelligence reports on journalists covering the Portland protests and monitored the communications of protesters -- after DHS reassigned a top official in charge of the relevant office.

“Over the last few weeks, we have seen troubling reports that the Department of Homeland Security, including the Office of Intelligence and Analysis, engaged in unprecedented, expanded intelligence-related activities in connection with protests happening around the nation, including the potential exploitation of electronic devices, monitoring of peaceful protesters, and creating and disseminating intelligence reports about journalists and protesters,” Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said in a statement.

Earlier Saturday, a person familiar with the matter confirmed to Fox News that Brian Murphy, the acting undersecretary for Intelligence and Analysis (I&A), had been reassigned to a new position by acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf.

It came after The Washington Post reported that the I&A office compiled intelligence reports about two journalists -- for The New York Times and Lawfare, respectively -- who had published leaked DHS documents. The Post also reported that the office analyzed the communications of protesters in Portland, where there had been weeks of protests and riots near the federal courthouse in the city’s downtown.

Schiff, in his statement, made reference to prior testimony from Murphy, in which he had told lawmakers his office did not collect data from protesters' electronic devices.


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