Campaign for Liberty has joined a coalition of organizations from across the political spectrum, as well as some whistleblowers, in a letter to Congress opposing the USA FREEDOM Act.
Text of the letter available here and below. Please help Campaign for Liberty stop attempts to extend the PATRIOT Act, including via the phony "reforms" of the USA FREEDOM Act by supporting our Stop the Surveillance State Banner Bomb.
Dear Members of Congress,
The undersigned civil liberties advocates, organizations, and surveillance experts urge you to oppose the USA FREEDOM Act and instead to push for the expiration of Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act on June 1st.
In the two years since Edward Snowden began disclosing proof of mass, warrantless surveillance of Americans and the rest of the world, surveillance proponents have had ample opportunity to provide proof of its efficacy, legality, and its necessity. They have failed to do so on every front. Instead, they have systematically misled both the public and Congress.
Under incredible public pressure, the White House and surveillance agencies have telegraphed acquiescence to minimal reforms in exchange for extension of Section 215 via legislation that would also eviscerate numerous court challenges to lawless surveillance and provide for legal immunization and compensation of companies that provide the government with customers’ private information, even where that company knows it is unlawful.
The sacrifices made by the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015 are unacceptable. The modest changes within this bill, in turn, fail to reform mass surveillance, of Americans and others, conducted under Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 and Executive Order 12333. Given intelligence agencies’ eagerness to subvert any attempts by Congress to rein in massive surveillance programs by changing the legal authorities under which they operate, the modest, proposed changes are no reform at all.
Section 215 was designed to sunset, and it is well past time that it did so. A vote for USA FREEDOM Act does too little to reform surveillance, and it does so at too great an expense. A vote against it, and against any law that reauthorizes Section 215, is the best step toward ending mass surveillance of Americans. We urge you to pursue such a path in defense of American civil liberties.
Tags: Patriot Act, USA Freedom