"Because the president has failed to adequately explain the necessity of these programs, the privacy concerns of some Americans are understandable. When considering any reforms, however, keeping Americans safe must remain our top priority."

Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio

"Today President Obama proposed bold and real steps to reform the methods the intelligence community uses to keep us safe. These proposed reforms will go a long way towards putting the imperatives of national security and personal liberty into … balance."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

"As intelligence professionals, we have historically preferred to avoid the spotlight. … To build on and maintain the trust of the American people and our international partners, we must embrace the president's call for transparency."

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper

"Obama's speech is an important contribution toward restoring the trust we've lost in our close friend and ally in the past months. … What's particularly welcome is that in future the same rules will apply to citizens of other states as for Americans."

Philipp Missfelder, from party of German Chancellor Angela Merkel

"The president's decision not to end bulk collection and retention of all Americans' data remains highly troubling. The president outlined a process to study the issue further and appears open to alternatives. But the president should end — not mend — the [program.]"

Anthony Romero, ACLU executive director