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House Rejects Extensions Of Patriot Act

From a gleeful Associated Press:

House rejects extensions of Patriot Act provisions

By Jim Abrams, Associated Press Writer Tue Feb 8, 2011

WASHINGTON – The House on Tuesday failed to extend the life of three surveillance tools that are key to the nation’s post-Sept. 11 anti-terror law, a slipup for the new Republican leadership that miscalculated the level of opposition.

The House voted 277-148 to keep the three provisions of the USA Patriot Act on the books until Dec. 8. But Republicans brought up the bill under a special expedited procedure requiring a two-thirds majority, and the vote was seven short of reaching that level.

The Republicans, who took over the House last month, lost 26 of their own members, adding to the 122 Democrats who voted against it. Supporters say the three measures are vital to preventing another terrorist attack, but critics say they infringe on civil liberties. They appealed to the antipathy that newer and more conservative Republicans hold for big government invasions of individual privacy

The Patriot Act bill would have renewed the authority for court-approved roving wiretaps that permit surveillance on multiple phones. Also addressed was Section 215, the so-called library records provision that gives the FBI court-approved access to "any tangible thing" relevant to a terrorism investigation.

The third deals with the "lone-wolf" provision of a 2004 anti-terror law that permits secret intelligence surveillance of non-U.S. people not known to be affiliated with a specific terrorist organization….

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, said Republican supporters of the tea party movement should show their opposition to big government by joining Democrats in opposing the measure.

The defeat means that Republicans may have to bring the bill back to the floor under regular procedures that only require a majority for passage but allow for amendments. Time is of the essence: The three provisions will expire on Feb. 28 if the House and Senate can’t agree on how to proceed…

Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel of the American Civil Liberties Union, said she was "glad to see there is bipartisan opposition to the Patriot Act 10 years later." The ACLU is a strong opponent of the three provisions, saying they lack proper and fundamental privacy safeguards.

Needless to say, if the Mr. Kucinich and the ACLU are opposed to extending the Patriot Act, all rational people should be for it. Hopefully, the Republican votes against it were only meant to be symbolic.

Since, as the article notes, the bill we be brought up again under regular order which will not require a two thirds majority, and it will probably pass before any real damage can be done.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, February 9th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

8 Responses to “House Rejects Extensions Of Patriot Act”

  1. River0 says:

    We should be celebrating! While Obama’s in charge, the Patriot Act becomes a perfect tool for him, his minions, foreign powers, and the Anti-Christ. If I were a Tea Party member in Congress, I would have voted it down, too.

    • Flession says:

      I actually have to concur with River; we shouldn’t have that on our books any longer. I trusted Bush enough with these sort of powers (barely), but leaving it open for someone like Obama (and therefore leaving it open for Soros, SEIU, and anyone else he deems worthy) is just asking for it.

      The White House wants to keep it open until 2013; that’s all you need to know to knock it down. Siding with Kucinich and the ACLU should be the least of our worries.

    • mr_bill says:

      Good points. The democrat-majority Congress re-authorized the Patriot Act in its entirety. If they really dislike it as much as they say, why did they re-authorize it? The code-stink and moveon.org crowds didn’t have a problem when the democrat Congress did it, why not? The answer rhymes with schmorge schmoros.

      The liberals will use these powers for their nefarious purposes, rather than keeping Americans safe from islamo-fascists. I agree with the Tea Party Congressmen on this one, liberals cannot be trusted with this type of power.

    • Flession says:

      Spooky Dude would love to get his hands on this, for sure.

      Also, let’s play a game! Ask all of your Liberal friends to see if they support removing Patriot Act now. If yes, then mention how Obama wants to keep it in.

      Prepare for some hardcore stammering.

    • Right of the People says:


      I’d love to do that but I don’t have any liberal friends. I’m very careful about who I associate with but for those of you who do, it’s a heck of a good idea. Catch them in their own lies. And don’t forget to throw in the Hitler was a vegetarian, that one is always good for a few laughs.

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      Hitler loved dogs too. That’s worth some more miles in the liberal discussion theater.

  2. oldpuppydixie says:

    TRANSLATION: We have another 26 “Republicans” to replace in 2012.

  3. Mithrandir says:

    I hope they dump the entire patriot act. AND the dept. of homeland security/ TSA.

    All of these are horrible, misguided plans after 911.

    Every stupid kid that dies, every moron using a cell phone while driving, every nut with a gun that shoots someone, every tragedy, we ALL lose a little bit more of our rights.

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