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Sunday Shows: Democrats Push NSA Reforms

On the Sunday shows, Democratic senators voice support for NSA reforms and the IMF chief warns against a debt ceiling fight.

Sunday Shows: Democrats Push NSA Reforms
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On the Sunday shows this week, more calls for changes at the NSA.

MARK UDALL: "It's time to have real reform, not the veneer of reform." (Via ABC)

And an economic warning from the International Monetary Fund.

DAVID GREGORY: "You were very concerned about the U.S. flirting with the debt ceiling and with default." (Via NBC)

For National Journal, I'm Zach Toombs. As usual, House Intelligence leader Mike Rogers was on the Sunday shows to defend the NSA's mass collection practices. But after a week of heightened NSA scrutiny, the agency's critics were out in full force, too. Like West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin.

SEN. JOE MANCHIN: "Now, we've found out Big Brother's truly watching you. ... I think you're going to find backing off some, making some changes that's going to keep us secure and safe but also not intrude the way we have been." (Via CNN)

Wednesday, a White House-appointed panel released a list of recommendations for reforming the NSA. That includes keeping phone metadata in the hands of a third party, like a phone company, rather than a federal agency. On ABC "This Week," Colorado Democrat Mark Udall threw his full support behind that panel. (Via RT )

UDALL: "The NSA has overreached. We need to quickly move to adopt the 46 recommendations of the president's panel. ... You know why? Cause we've got to rebuild the American people's trust in our intelligence community so we can be safe."

And after Time magazine named Pope Francis its person of the year, "Fox News Sunday" asked American pastor Joel Osteen for his opinion of the new pontiff. Francis has taken some criticism from conservatives for his populist economic views. (Via BBC)

OSTEEN: "I like the new pope. I'm sure there are certain things that people may not agree with. But I like the fact that he's made the church more inclusive."

Turning to the U.S. economy, IMF chief Christine Lagarde told NBC's "Meet the Press" the recent budget deal passed through Congress is an encouraging sign for the global economy. But she's also wary of another fight over the U.S. debt ceiling. 

LAGARDE: "I certainly hope that in February Congress will be equally responsible and will not threaten the recovery with yet another debate about whether or not the U.S. will honor or default."

Raising the U.S. debt ceiling only pays off existing bills racked up by the government. It doesn't approve any future spending. However, GOP Rep. Paul Ryan has said his party does expect negotiations over raising that debt limit next year.