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Congress Reveals Government can use Patriot Act to find out who Reads about the Second Amendment

In this past Thursday’s meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee, there was a very interesting question-and-answer period between Senator Dick Durbin and the Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Patrick Leahy. Senator Leahy proposed an amendment to curtail Patriot Act powers so that records of book purchases couldn’t be collected by the government unless the government [...]

Dick Durbin Reveals: Only 1 Senator Showed Up to Jay Bybee’s Confirmation Hearing

In a meeting of the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois noted a small piece of history that is nevertheless important for understanding the path history has taken. Regarding the confirmation hearing of Jay Bybee in 2001, Dick Durbin noted:

We saw what happened when Mr. Bybee was head of the Office [...]

Which Congressional Leaders Speak Against Illegal FBI Spying?

If we are going to get a serious inquiry into the FBI’s invention of terrorist conspiracy stories in order to spy against Americans, we’re most likely to get that inquiry started by Representative Nadler, Senator Leahy or Senator Feingold. The remaining congressional Democratic leaders don’t seem to care enough about the integrity of Americans’ constitutional freedoms to raise a peep of opposition to the FBI abuses. [...]

Most Democrats Vote Against Protecting Americans From National Security Letters

8 out of the 12 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee voted against protecting Americans’ constitutional rights from known abuses of the Patriot Act. The following is a transcript of the speech Senator Dick Durbin gave explaining why the abuses of the Patriot Act called for a restriction of National Security Letter powers. [...]

Patrick Leahy: Don’t Worry Your Pretty Little Head None, I’ll Monitor Warrantless Surveillance All By Myself

Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont has just dropped the barest fig leaf onto his vote against the Durbin Amendment, which would restrict warrantless surveillance under national security letters to individuals who are — or who are even just connected to — a suspected terrorist or spy. Patrick Leahy rejected even that standard for warrantless surveillance. [...]

Patrick Leahy: Don't Worry Your Pretty Little Head None, I'll Monitor Warrantless Surveillance All By Myself

Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont has just dropped the barest fig leaf onto his vote against the Durbin Amendment, which would restrict warrantless surveillance under national security letters to individuals who are — or who are even just connected to — a suspected terrorist or spy. Patrick Leahy rejected even that standard for warrantless surveillance. [...]

Durbin Introduces Amendment To Control National Security Letter Abuses

Senator Jon Kyl responded that Durbin’s amendment would threaten investigations in their earliest stages, because people conducting terrorism investigations cannot be expected to know whether the people they are investigating are suspected of involvement in terrorism. [...]

Transcript: Senator Dick Durbin on Surveillance, Terrorism and the Constitution

On October 1, 2009, Senator Richard Durbin made remarks to the Senate Judiciary Committee, remarks that contain an explosive allegation for those who carefully listen (see minute 63 to minute 69 of this video archive). At the beginning of those remarks, Senator Durbin declined to request that his remarks be made part of the official [...]

Senate Democrats Join Republicans To Kill Protection From Government Spies

The Durbin amendment to S. 1692 would have required that Section 215 Patriot Act spying only be used to protect against spies working against the American government, terrorism, or as a part of spying against foreign targets that are not related to Americans. Who could object to that? Eight Senate Democrats, that’s who. [...]

Finally, an Attorney General Against Cruelty and Inhumanity

We have had years of Attorney Generals who won’t answer the question, “Is Waterboarding an act of torture?” Now Attorney General nominee Eric Holder has come out and said what is obvious: “Waterboarding is Torture.”

In further confirmation testimony yesterday on the treatment of prisoners, Eric Holder responded to a question about other interrogation techniques [...]