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What did the USA FREEDOM Act Mark-Up have in common with WrestleMania?

The outcome of both was "pre-determined".....

Last Thursday, the House Judiciary Committee marked up the "USA Freedom Act," the phony PATRIOT Act Reform bill. While Campaign for Liberty did oppose the bill, we supported two amendments, one offered by Representatives Ted Poe (TX-02) and Zoe Lofgren (CA-19) and one offered by Representative Raul Labrador (ID-01).

Both amendments failed in part because members who supported the amendment refused to vote for them because passing these pro-civil liberty amendments would "kill the bill." How could strengthening a bill supposedly designed to protect civil liberties kill the bill? It was because the language of this bill was negotiated with House Leadership and the Intelligence Committee to make sure that the "reforms" in the bill did not place too many burdens on the ability of the government to spy on us keep us safe from terrorists. Any amendments that would have actually protected our privacy would have thus killed the bill by causing the Intelligence Committee to withdraw their support since the House leadership has apparently given the Intelligence Committee veto power over this bill.

So the next time someone says the USA FREEDOM Act represents real reform remember that this bill was "pre-cleared" by some of the biggest defenders of warrantless surveillance in Congress.

For more on the USA FREEDOM Act mark-up see this article  from The Hill.

Also read this piece from Patrick Eddington of CATO, and see Marcy Wheeler on the mark up here and here.

 


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