Able Danger Blog

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Friday, January 20, 2006

Mueller questioned about Able Danger

No, it wasn't a congressional hearing. It was a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce.


Speaking at a breakfast, Mueller told the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that pending legislation to renew the law includes provisions to better protect civil liberties than under the current law.

The chamber opposes the pending reauthorization bill....

Rolf Lundberg, a senior vice president of congressional and public affairs at the chamber, asked Mueller several questions about the status of the FBI's enforcement of international anti-counterfeiting law, the agency's technology upgrade and the awarding of a related tech contract.

Lundberg also asked about Congress' inquiry into Able Danger, a data-mining project of the Defense Department that has been scrapped but that was the subject of a congressional inquiry last year because of privacy concerns.

Mueller did not provide details on that investigation or on the technology upgrade. However, he said the FBI has been successful in pursuing a case in which a Corning official tried to sell its trade secrets to a competitor in Taiwan.

C-SPAN has the video here. I haven't watched it yet, but it sounds like Mueller simply avoided answering the question, whatever the question was Lundberg asked.

UPDATE: Ha, here is a transcript of the entire exchange, at about the 30 minute mark:

Lundberg: Mr. Director, certain Congressmen have requested an investigation on the Able Danger issue. Can you address what the FBI is currently doing with respect to those requests?

Mueller: Um, um, the, uh, there, whatever requests there are for investigations are pending at the Department of Justice. I know that Congress is looking at Able Danger at this juncture.