Rumors circulate on Capitol Hill about a secretive effort by US congressional leaders to save the Section 702 surveillance program.

There are talks of slipping a last-minute provision into a defense authorization bill to salvage the controversial program.

Private discussions between party leaders, House speaker Mike Johnson, and Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer are reportedly underway.

Concerns arise as the plan may lack support from rank-and-file members, and Schumer and Johnson have not responded to requests for comment.

Section 702, set to expire at the year's end, allows warrantless surveillance of foreign citizens' communications believed to be overseas.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is expected to be the vehicle for the last-minute provision.

Amendments to the NDAA would force members into an up-or-down vote with limited debate and no chance to exclude changes.

Only a few top lawmakers currently know the final text of the NDAA, and party leaders expect a quick approval for a vote.

Extending the 702 program in this manner could lead to a major dispute in the House, where influential Republicans oppose reauthorization without privacy safeguards.

A coalition of Republican and Democratic lawmakers opposes a clean reauthorization due to years of internal abuse in the program.