Patriot Act v2.0: US House Passes FISA 702 Surveillance Expansion 'Reform' (UPDATED)

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives voted on passing a two-year extension of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (“FISA 702”), a controversial warrantless spying authority, and in an extremely narrow tie vote, rejected critical reforms to stop rampant abuse of the law.

Patriot Act v2.0: US House Passes FISA 702 Surveillance Expansion 'Reform' (UPDATED)
  • "The legislation, however, remains stuck in the House. Right after the bill passed, members went back and forth as to how to proceed. Rep. Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL) demanded a recorded vote on the motion to table, which will take place as early as Monday — keeping the bill from reaching the Senate until that time," reports Washington Examiner.
  • The bill, which reauthorizes the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, also needs to pass the Senate ahead of an April 19 deadline.
“So everybody’s gotta go home and tell constituents over the next 72 hours about why they are siding with the intelligence agencies in the deep state and the swamp over the rights and liberties of the American people,” Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) said following the vote.
  • "The amendment to require the gov’t to obtain a warrant to search Section 702 data for Americans’ communications failed by an achingly close vote of 212-212, following some truly shameless misrepresentations about the amendment from @MikeTurnerOH, the White House, & others," writes Elizabeth Goitein, co-director of the Liberty and National Security Program at the Brennan Center for Justice.
"Opponents branded the notion that the government should need a warrant to read Americans’ communications—the core of the Fourth Amendment and the guiding principle for searching Americans’ private correspondence for more than 200 years—as “extreme,” she added.
  • "Check out this list of how members voted. If your representative voted the wrong way, don’t be quiet about it. Look up their office phone number (it’s easy), give them a call, and let them know how you feel about their disregard of your rights."
"That’s bad enough. But the House also voted for the amendment many of us have been calling “Patriot Act 2.0.” This will force ordinary American businesses that provide wifi to their customers to give the NSA access to their wifi equipment to conduct 702 surveillance," continues Goitein.
  • "And that’s not all. The House also passed an amendment authorizing completely suspcionless searches for the communications of non-U.S. persons seeking permission to travel to the U.S., even if the multiple vetting mechanisms already in place reveal no cause for concern."
"There are more bad things in this bill—a needless expansion of the definition of “foreign intelligence,” provisions that weaken the role of amici in FISA Court proceedings, special treatment for members of Congress—but it would take too many tweets to cover them all."
  • "The Senate should not pass this bill. The government already obtained approval from the FISA Court to conduct Section 702 surveillance until April 25. According to the administration, that approval will stay in place even if Section 702 lapses."
  • "That means there is NO RUSH. It’s critical that Congress get this right. The House got it massively, egregiously wrong. It must be fixed in the Senate, however long it takes. Please call your senators and urge them not to pass this disgraceful bill," said Goitein.

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