For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
December 8, 2004
President's Statement on the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004
I commend the Congress for passing historic legislation that will better protect the American people and help defend against ongoing terrorist threats.
We already have taken numerous steps to improve our intelligence capabilities, and the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 further strengthens intelligence gathering and operations. The legislation includes important reforms, such as creating a strong Director of National Intelligence with full budget authority to integrate and manage the foreign and domestic activities of the Intelligence Community. In addition, the law will further enhance the National Counterterrorism Center, established earlier this year and tasked with ensuring a unified effort across the government for counterterrorism activities. It will also preserve the chain of command in our Cabinet departments and agencies and the military by respecting the clear lines of authority within the Executive Branch.
We remain a Nation at war, and intelligence is our first line of defense against the terrorists who seek to do us harm. I am pleased the measure also contains many critical law enforcement tools that I have called for that will help make America more secure. I look forward to signing this landmark piece of legislation into law.