Just before dinner on the night of May 26 2011, the United States Senate voted 72-23 to preserve the most audacious government surveillance and seizure powers of the Patriot Act. Groups like No Labels and Americans Elect which judge the value of policy by the bipartisan nature of their support should be happy with the […]
18 votes against the reformless reauthorization of the USA Patriot Act weren’t enough to stop the legislation from moving forward in the Senate, but the 13 Democrats, 4 Republicans and 1 Independent who made a stand to halt the reauthorization process on May 26 2011 should be recognized for their efforts to defend constitutional government:
In a speech on the floor of the Senate yesterday, Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon spoke in support of amendments to reform the Patriot Act, just before Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made a sudden move to forbid all such amendments and force the reauthorization of the Patriot Act to move forward.
In his speech, […]
On May 12 2011, Rep. Robert Scott introduced a new wrinkle to considerations of Patriot Act powers and their uses. We already know from reports to Congress that most uses of the Patriot Act have nothing to do with terrorism. But what, then, is the purpose of the Patriot Act?
In a House Judiciary Committee […]
Over the last decade, the Patriot Act has allowed a wide net of surveillance, search and seizure to be cast over the United States, purposefully targeting innocent people not even suspected of criminal activity. The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits that, but the government has proceeded regardless. Documents show that the powers […]
On May 4 2011, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Pat Leahy made one final check with President Barack Obama’s Attorney General Eric Holder to make sure that S. 193, a bill considered by civil libertarians to be a meager improvement of the Patriot Act with imperfect reforms, was to the Obama administration’s liking.
S. 193 was […]