Senate passes 3-month Patriot Act Extension

The vote was 86-12.  The Hill has the details, and here’s the roll call vote.

On our planning call last week the consensus this was the least awful of the options.  So, thanks to everybody who got involved and made enough noise that they couldn’t sneak through something more awful!

And now, looks like we’ve got some serious organizing to do.  Stay tuned for more.


4 Responses to Senate passes 3-month Patriot Act Extension

  1. Ed Kendrick says:

    Ignoring the fraud of 9-11 and the extortion of anthrax letters from our own military laboratory, the leadership of Get FISA Right is all set to keep FISA abuses in place and make us think that a ‘compromise’ of the ‘least awful option is some sort of success.

    Putting on the appearance of opposing FISA is different from actually engaging the underlying corrupt foundations–lies of 9-11 and anthrax–which preceded and were used to justify escalation of FISA.

    I’ll bet that the wiretapping companies COMVERSE and AMDOCS weren’t part of the discussion either. See FOXNEWS four part series on these hub phone/internet companies which are owned by Israelis and which have capability to monitor (wiretap) nearly all phone and internet communications.

    Look at the Get FISA Right leadership to see the connections–and why this effort isn’t making headway.

  2. Patrick Bruckart says:

    Has there been any discussion of public hearings in relation to H.R. 514? Congress needs to invite open, public participation in their decision-making process with the PATRIOT Act and FISA.

  3. jonpincus says:

    Ed, attacking us isn’t a good way to get people to listen to you. If you’ve got an alternate strategy that you think would work given the makeup of the current Congress, or would influence the 2012 elections to get a Congress more favorable to repealing the PATRIOT Act, you’d be better off describing it and trying to convince people to join you.

    Patrick, there hasn’t been any discussion of public hearings as far as I know. It’s a great point though, we need to get more participation. If Congress won’t do it, perhaps we can work with some civil liberties groups to help organize it.

  4. Patrick Bruckart says:

    @Jon Great idea!

    I’ve run across a couple of articles that mentioned the possibility of public hearings, but I do not have them on hand. I “think” Rep. John Conyers was quoted in one of them.

    The article below mentions “oversight hearings.” My understanding is that Intelligence Committees tend to have closed hearings, but that most of the other Committees’ hearings tend to be open to the public.

    The Hill’s Floor Action Blog: House sends Patriot Act to Obama (By Pete Kasperowicz – 02/17/11)

    “But other Democrats on Thursday continued to oppose the bill, arguing that the GOP is pushing for an extension without any hearings….”

    “Others pushed generally for more oversight of the surveillance programs, and Republicans again said they would hold oversight hearings between now and the end of May.”

    I would also like to share my comment on this article:

    “There is widespread concern about the Patriot Act across all political spectrums and Congress has fueled this concern by keeping the legislative process around the Act, and related laws, relatively closed to the average citizen. It is in the public interest for Congress to hold public hearings on the currently expiring Patriot Act provisions, as well as National Security Letters, if not the entire Act.”

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