On the other hand, protecting the security of the American people — which is what classified information is all about — is the number one obligation of government.
Since the Fourth of July is upon us, Mr. McCarthy might like to revisit these words from the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
McCarthy is right that security is the number one obligation of government, but the Framers knew that this obligation, while necessary, was not sufficient for a republican government. The American colonist were surely more secure under the British crown and protected by British arms and British ships, but yet they were not willing to trade this increased security for their liberties.
Happy Fourth of July.