Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) joined Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and others to improve governmental transparency regarding federal 9/11 investigations. For nearly 20 years, 9/11 survivors and victims’ families have fought tirelessly to identify and bring to justice all of the perpetrators of the attacks. The bipartisan September 11th Transparency Act requires federal agencies to conduct a declassification review of records related to the 9/11 attacks.
“It’s been nearly 20 years since the September 11 attacks, and while the world has changed greatly, the public still doesn’t have the full picture of everything that led up to that day and all who were involved. Victims and their families deserve answers. This bill instructs the executive branch to pull back the veil and make as much 9/11 records as transparent as possible,” Grassley said.
“If the United States government is sitting on any documents that may implicate Saudi Arabia in the events of 9/11, these families and the American people have a right to know. If information is power, then we must give our 9/11 families access to that information and any power it provides them as they carry forward their search for truth, justice, and accountability for the September 11th attacks,” Menendez said.
The September 11th Transparency Act will ensure that the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) declassify, as appropriate, the documents that could identify additional co-conspirators. The bill doesn’t require the agencies to declassify any specific documents, but the agencies must complete declassification reviews through their appropriate existing processes. The DOJ, CIA and DNI must provide Congress with justification if they decide not to declassify a document or record. The bill is modeled on the declassification review of the Bin Laden raid that Congress passed in 2014.
Along with Menendez and Grassley, the bill is cosponsored by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.). Congressman Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.-08) will introduce companion legislation in the House of Representatives.