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disease. Accordingly, we urge the unequivocal rejection of H.R. 15626, H.R. 15018, H.R. 15828 and similar bills.
The CHAIRMAN. Could you, in a thumbnail fashion, state why you don't think the bill satisfies the decision?
Mr. SPEISER. Well, initially, as far as it attempts to overturn Robel-H.R. 15626 would amend the Internal Security Act of 1950 and provide for barring from employment in defense facilities any member of an organization which is determined to be a Communistaction organization, who has knowledge or notice of its designation as a defense facility. This does not satisfy Robel, or the case of Aptheker v. Secretary of State, 378 U.S. 500, in which a similar provision making it a crime for an individual to apply for, or receive a passport with knowledge of, or notice that an organization to which he belongs has been denoted as a Communist organization by the Subversive Activities Control Board, was held unconstitutional. If Aptheker v. Secretary of State is good law, then this proposed revision of the Internal Security Act would be unconstitutional under that decision.
The CHAIRMAN. Is there any suggestion you would care to offer whereby it could be stripped out as a constitutional bill that would comport with the decision? Would you care to offer a suggestion?
Mr. SPEISER. No, I don't see how you can, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. In other words, so far as you are concerned, you don't want any legislation of any kind. That's the nutshell way of expressing it. Tell the truth about it.
Mr. SPEISER. I have never appeared before you, Mr. Chairman
The CHAIRMAN. And you have never agreed with the committee, either.
Mr. SPEISER. —without telling the truth. May I continue? I would like to answer your question.
The CHAIRMAN. You would like to do what?
Mr. SPEISER. No, I can't think of any legislation that would be constitutionally permissible, nor desirable, to accomplish the purpose that is attempted to be accomplished with this legislation. This may arise from a difference in what we conceive to be dangers to the country.
Mr. ASHBROOK. On that point, do you consider it dangerous to the country for Communists to have access to any secret information?
Mr. SPEISER. I think that is a relevant fact to consider, but that is not
Mr. ASHBROOK. Wait a second. You either do or you don't. In other words, you don't.
Mr. SPEISER. No. Well, then, the answer is, no, I don't.
Mr. ASHBROOK. There is no information, anywhere, either in defense or defense industries, Justice, State Department, that you and your organization do not feel that any Communist should be entitled to, as much as any other American.
Mr. SPEISER. In the way you state it, Mr. Ashbrook, the answer is "No," based on the same kinds of distinction that the Supreme Court has made. That is, you don't brand a person as being a Communist and
say, “That is the end of the question.” You have to make a further inquiry as to knowledge of illegal aims of an organization and specific intent to further those aims. You can't merely stop after making a determination that a person is a member of an organization.
Mr. ASHBROOK. Wait a second. We are saying he is a Communist. We are not making a determination whether or not he is; for the purpose of this question, the person is a Communist, whether he be Gus Hall or someone else. You wouldn't have any qualms about letting Gus Hall, for example, have access to any secret information or security information ?
Mr. SPEISER. I think you have to make a further inquiry in every case, and I am not going to get into an argument about specific individuals. You used the term “Communist,” which apparently has a meaning to you and which may not have the same meaning to me. This is the kind of problem that the Supreme Court has wrestled with in determining what are valid criteria for determining that individuals should not have access to information or work in certain industries.
Mr. ASHBROOK. Let's qualify that. Assuming he is a Communist who has the express purpose of turning information over to a foreign power, would you then think that it would be wrong for him to have access to secret information?
Mr. SPEISER. No, that wouldn't be wrong to bar him, nor would I think that it would be wrong
Mr. ASHBROOK. You wouldn't think that would be wrong?
Mr. SPEISER. It would not be wrong to bar such a person from working in a defense facility having access to classified information. And I would make the same judgment about a non-Communist. The Communist question doesn't end your inquiry. It may start it, but it certainly doesn't end it, and what this legislation attempts to do is say, “This is the end of the inquiry."
Mr. CULVER. Mr. Chairman, may I ask a question to clarify a point?
Just for my own personal clarification, Mr. Speiser, do I understand you correctly that in the event all the criteria that have been articulated by the Supreme Court in this area were satisfied, concerning the knowledge of the Communist conspiracy, the active participation, and so on and so forth, that you would feel that in those particular carefully drawn situations, the Government was perfectly in its right, and as a matter of self-preservation, to bar access under those circumstances for a person that satisfied those criteria ?
Mr. SPEISER. Yes. And by “access," I assume you mean access to a situation where they would have access to classified information.
Mr. CULVER. Exactly.
Mr. SPEISER. Yes. But let me make sure my position is understood, Mr. Culver. One of the rules that I get out of the Robel case is that you don't bar access, even for individuals, who
The CHAIRMAX. Even what?
Mr. SPEISER. Even for individuals who fall within the category, if they don't have a position where they could harm national security, and you don't make a judgment like that, solely by legislative fiat.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, Mr. Ashbrook's question was penetrating. In that question, I think you asked the knowledge, with the knowledge that he would pass it on to a foreign government. So that's not hypothetical.
Mr. SPEISER. No, I have no problem with that, Mr. Ashbrook. Yes, if he has access to information, secret classified or any classified information, and there is knowledge that he would pass it on to a foreign government, you are right, the Government has a right to bar him from that kind of position, and whether he is a Communist or not is almost irrelevant. It is the question of his intention to pass it on.
Mr. ASHBROOK. It is a question of prejudging. Mr. SPEISER. Very much so. Mr. ASHBROOK. Your organization would take the position in favor of passing a bill that prejudged that every American might discriminate in housing, on one hand, it might be all right, and on the other hand, it might be wrong?
Mr. SPEISER. I am sorry, I don't hear you.
Mr. Ashbrook. I say, you would certainly support a bill, the thrust of which would prejudge every American in wanting to discriminate in housing, but yet you won't prejudge when it comes to secret documents.
Mr. SPEISER. I am not aware of the fact that our support for the open housing provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 involved a position of prejudging Americans. It would seem to me that that is not involved in that kind of situation. It set up standards in a law to accomplish the desired social end.
Mr. ASHBROOK. Which is what we are trying to do, here. These standards. If I can read you directly, the situation you agreed to is one that can never ever be accomplished. I mean, how many Communists are going to, or how many times are you going to come across a contract, or a known agreement, that a Communist is going to turn something over? You isolate the factual situation so narrowly, in my opinion, you never ever could make the law applicable in any relevant situation, because the thing you people seem to fail to understand is the whole thrust of the Communist organization is to conceal, is to engage in duplicity, to deceive.
Now how you can use these criteria for an organization like this is beyond me. I don't think you could ever make it applicable, the way you have drawn this.
Nr. SPEISER. Well, we do have a security program, under which consideration is given to whether classified information will be compromised. I think it has often been suggested that the effective spies, in our society, are ones who wouldn't have any connection with Communist or leftwing or radical organizations, simply because that kind of information is too easily picked up by security officers and agencies, and I think that this has been, to a great extent, true, as far as our problems with spying. So it isn't a question of leaving our information freely available, and having no security program. It is a question of judgment, I grant you that. But the difficulty, and the reason, I suppose, for our going off in diverse directions is the feeling that you can make a judgment as to whether individuals would turn over classified information, based on their political points of view. Now
Mr. ASHBROOK. All right, to reiterate
Mr. SPEISER. I raise a red flag, I realize, when I use that term before the committee, in talking about people who may or have been members of the Communist Party, or Communist organizations. But what the Supreme Court has puzzled about in this area and I don't think they
have done it lightly, and you have had conservatives on the Court who joined in opinions as to what the Government can do or can't do to people who belong to the Communist Party—is that you can't make a flat judgment as to why people are Communists. There are different kinds of Communists. They join for different reasons, they join at different times. You can't assume that merely because a person is a Communist that he necessarily is a spy or is going to turn over classified information.
Mr. ASHBROOK. So what you are saying, to reiterate, and I want to make sure your words are correct, I believe you drew a distinction, a plain, everyday, average Communist, in any sensitive position with access to any secret information would be all right, as far as you and your organization is concerned.
Mr. SPEISER. You are putting words in my mouth, because
Mr. ASHBROOK. You stated a Communist, a person who just happens to belong. I think you can answer that yes or no.
Mr. SPEISER. Except that I am not sure, again, Mr. Ashbrook, how you are using the term, and whether you are using it in the same sense that I am, when you say, "a plain, everyday, average Communist."
Mr. ASHBROOK. That is one you can't show is working for a foreign power. And you can't show he is going to turn over the information. He just happens to be a Communist.
Mr. SPEISER. And you can't show the specific intent to further illegal aims?
Vr. ASHBROOK. He just is a member of the Communist Party. Mr. SPEISER. Then in answer to that question, the answer is no.
Mr. ASHBROOK. As far as you are concerned, he could have any sensitive position.
Mr. SPEISER. If all that you know about him is that.
Mr. SPEISER. You have to know something more. That may be the basis for a further inquiry about him. But you can't use that, we believe, as the end of your inquiry, and on that basis, exclude him.
Mr. ASHBROOK. I see. Excuse me. Would the same thing go for an average, everyday member of the Mafia, belonging to the police force, or something like that? Simply because he belongs to the Mafia, you wouldn't prejudge him, let him hold any position of responsibility, influence, or exercising office?
Mr. SPEISER. I am not sure that the Mafia is as clearly defined a group in our society as the Communist Party, but the answer again is essentially the same.
Mr. ISUBROOK. The same old everyday Mafla member.
Mr. SPEISER. You see, I don't know what you mean by “Mafia." If you mean that he is a member of a family, and the family is involved in what is ordinarily referred to as the Mafia, then the answer is no.
Mr. ASTBROOK. I say "I am a member of the Mafia," and you don't think society has any right to say, “You should not be a chairman or head of a grand jury," or something like that.
Mr. Speiser. Well, again, 1 (lon't know what you mean by the Mafia. as compared to what I think it means.
Mír. ASHBROOK. Well, I think that probably you believe that there are good and bad Communists, and there very well may be. I guess I just don't agree with you.
Mr. SPEISER. I even believe there is good and bad on the House UnAmerican Activities Committee.
Mr. ASHBROOK. Well-
Mr. CULVER. Mr. Speiser, do you think the further inquiry that would be necessary to establish the security-risk situation that would properly bar employment in a sensitive situation would be received by the criteria enunciated by the Chief Justice in the Robel case, or at least alluded to, when he specifically said the status makes it irrelevant that an individual may be a passive or an active member of a designated organization, that he may be unaware of the
organization's unlawful aims, or that an individual—or that he may disagree with those unlawful aims. It is also irrelevant that an individual who is subject to the penalties of the statute may occupy a nonsensitive position in the defense facility.
Now in response to Mr. Ashbrook's question, assuming that you can satisfy those criteria, which can be relatively objectively ascertained, do you think that that would present a situation where properly and constitutionally, under this statute, you could bar employment!
Mr. SPEISER. I think so. Only if you have all of the factors that you mentioned, that the Chief Justice enunciated. You are asking what would be permissible, and I think as Mr. Culver has pointed out, there are some criteria set out by the Supreme Court; but it is apparent, as I read the bills, that this is not what is desired by the proponents of this legislation. Because I assume, Mr. Ashbrook, you feel that those criteria would be just too difficult to fulfill. Mr. ASHBROOK. Well, I guess we would disagree. I think it is fair
should have a right to associate with any groups he wants, but I just fail to understand how a person can cail himself a Nazi, for example, and not make himself subject to the argument that either knowingly or for one reason or another, accepting the connotation of what nazism has been in history, and its
The CHAIRMAN. And the same would be true of the Ku Klux Klan.
Mr. ASHBROOK. The Ku Klux Klan. I don't doubt a bit but what you have warmhearted, honest, Christian Ku Klux Klanners, but it just seems to leave me cold to think that in taking up that mantle he isn't in a way accepting what the Ku Klux Klan means, exactly the same as communism. Their worldwide purpose of domination, subversion, and so on. I don't know how you can be a Communist and not accept what the thrust of the world communism has been for the last 50 years, and I guess that's where you and I could never agree.
Mr. SPEISER. Well, I think most of what you have just said, Mr. Ashbrook, seems to be that this person has become part of a group that has offensive ideas, repugnant ideas, and you are leaving out, in my view, the critical factor, whether you are talking about the denial of a security clearance, Government job, or a wide range of privileges, of what is he going to do, in that specific kind of situation.
You have to go beyond that factor, and this is where I think that our basic
Mr. ASHBROOK. But who have been the people that have leaked the defense secrets in the last 20 years? Who are the Judith Coplons and
that a person