The oft-contested Patriot Act has been increasingly under fire. Recently, a court ruled its mass surveillance of phone records is illegal and certain parts of the Patriot Act are up for reauthorization in the Senate.
Now there’s a bipartisan effort to fight the reauthorization.
Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky are working together. They both plan to filibuster any short-term extensions. Wyden said he would not let any extensions pass “without major reforms like ending the collection of phone records,” he said. Paul echoed the plan. “We will be filibustering. We will be trying to stop it. We are not going to let them run over us,” Paul told the Union Leader.
The White House Office of Management and Budget issued a statement advocating for reformation of the Patriot Act, which would end the NSA’s phone monitoring program.
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The USA Freedom Act would change some of the contended elements of the Patriot Act and extend the law - it’s poised for a House vote later this week and has bipartisan support. “The bill strengthens … privacy and civil liberties protections, while preserving essential authorities our intelligence and law enforcement professionals need to protect the nation,” the administration said in a statement.