Senate Rejcts Extension of Patriot Act

Contrary to the wishes of President Bush and the Executive branch, the Senate has refused to approve the extension of the Patriot Act that recently won victory in the House of Representatives. Senator Russell Feingold of Wisconsin pictured in this ABC News story lead the filibuster. If an extension is not voted in, the Act in its entirety will expire on the last day of the year, but investigators will still be able to pursue any
investigations begun before that time.

Another longer story in eweek offers several Senators explains for their actions: " "I went to bed last night unsure how to vote on this legislation," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. "Today's revelation that the government listened in on hundreds of phone conversations without getting a warrant is shocking. There ought to be discussion. There ought to be debate."

Calling the secret order an example of "Big Brother run amok," Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., said that more oversight of police powers is needed.

"For past three years this administration has been eavesdropping on hundreds of calls without warrants or oversight," Kennedy said. "This administration feels it is above the law."

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oboy

1. The Senate did not 'extend the filibuster'.

2. The Senate did not refuse to extend the Patriot Act.

The Senate, by majority, had the votes to extend the Patriot Act, they did not have the votes to overturn the threatened filibuster by Democrats. No one even filibusters anymore, Senators just threaten to do it and everyone curls up into the fetal position.

3. If Senators Schumer and Kennedy are so upset about phone taps that don't require warrants then they should have taken it up with their fellow Democrat, Senator Rockefeller, who knew about the taps from the getgo. In fact they should take it up with the Times who also knew for a number of months but stalled in order to release the story in companion with the 'reporter'/author's book.

Never fear...

...because Majority Leader Frist has determined to revisit this issue after the first of the year. BTW, has anyone actually READ the USA PATRIOT Act? Oooo....there is a knock at my door. Must be the jack-booted thugs coming to spy on me and check my library records...

Re:oboy

3. If Senators Schumer and Kennedy are so upset about phone taps that don't require warrants then they should have taken it up with their fellow Democrat, Senator Rockefeller, who knew about the taps from the getgo. In fact they should take it up with the Times who also knew for a number of months but stalled in order to release the story in companion with the 'reporter'/author's book.

Yes they should.

They should ALSO take up this gross violation of procedure and constituational law with judiciary hearings, and make the American people aware of the fact that the exectutive branch is trying to erode civil liberties even further.

I don't see how these are mutually exclusive. (Unless you view the world as binary us-against-them, in which case "but you're side's not perfect either!" takes on the appearance of a reasonable argument.)

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