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Pompeo tries to reassure Kansans on cyberspying

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) -- Kansas congressman Mike Pompeo is trying to quell fears back home about government electronic surveillance.

Pompeo is the newest Republican member of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee, which held a rare, open hearing Tuesday amid debate over national security and personal privacy.

In a phone interview Wednesday, Pompeo said conservatives have a long tradition of understanding the federal government's primary mission to be ensuring the nation's ability to defend itself. He wants to make sure the country does not lose the capability to do that.

He says the programs exposed by a contractor for National Security Agency have adequate oversight.

Pompeo says the Intelligence Committee is working to declassify as much as possible to show the programs are saving lives.