Rose: So I hear you saying I have no problem with what NSA has been doing.
Obama: Well, let me finish, because I don’t. … (The FBI has) to go to the FISA court with probable cause and ask for a warrant.
Rose: But has FISA court turned down any request?
Obama: First of all, Charlie, the number of requests are surprisingly small, number one. Number two -- folks don’t go with a query unless they’ve got a pretty good suspicion.
Rose: Should this be transparent in some way?
Obama: It is transparent, that’s why we set up the FISA court. The whole point of my concern before I was president -- because some people say well, Obama was this raving liberal before, now he’s Dick Cheney. Dick Cheney sometimes says, "Yes, you know, he took it all, lock stock and barrel." My concern has always been not that we shouldn’t do intelligence gathering to prevent terrorism but rather are we setting up a system of checks and balances?
We wondered whether Obama has justification for saying that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court "is transparent." So we decided to investigate.[...]
Obama said that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court "is transparent." We don’t doubt that there are good reasons for secrecy at the court, but if you’re going to operate a mostly secret court, you also don’t get to crow about how "transparent" it is. The president can’t have his cake and eat it, too. We rate his claim Pants on Fire.