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Psst, It’s Classified. Don’t Read It Before You Vote

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  1. Freedom of Information
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Only a dozen or so of the 327 House members who voted to approve the Intelligence Authorization Bill this spring read its classified portions, the Boston Globe reported. House members must make an appointment, go to a secure room without any aides, and agree not do discuss what they’ve read. “It’s a trap,” said Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-MO. “Either way, you’re flying blind.” Some members said they don’t read the classified sections because it limits their ability to debate the legislation and intelligence issues generally, in part out of fear they might inadvertently mention the classified information they read. They say the process effectively gives the administration, which decides what to classify, a free pass on oversight. (8/14/06)