Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Sensenbrenner: Hearings on Patriot Act Renewal

Very interesting turn of events.

Jim Sensenbrenner wants to extend three Patriot Act provisions ONLY to the end of this year. It's possible that they'll be extended further, but only after Congressional hearings. He does want to make them permanent--but he thinks hearings will be useful.

We agree.

Meantime, the (D) folk (and McConnell of the Senate) want to make them permanent, or maintain them at least through 2013.

So: who's actually for freedom?

The first provision allows investigators to use “roving wiretaps,” meaning they don’t need to apply for new court orders each time a suspect switches phone lines in an attempt to evade detection. The second is a broad provision allowing investigators to review any “tangible items” they discover in the course of a foreign intelligence or terrorism investigation. The third allows PATRIOT Act powers to be used against suspected “lone wolf” terrorists who aren’t members of an identified terrorist group.

Maybe they're reasonable; maybe they need better language.

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