US Opinion and Commentary

“VOA will present the policies of the United States clearly and effectively, and will also present responsible discussion and opinion on these policies.” — VOA Charter

Revisiting the Patriot Act

Posted May 11th, 2015 at 12:06 pm (UTC-4)
Comments are closed



Your Phone Is None of the Government’s Business

Senator Rand Paul — TIME

Opponents of civil liberties contend the NSA data collection has made our country more safe, but even the most vocal defenders of the program have failed to identify a single thwarted plot. If anything, the terror attack during the Boston marathon is a tragic reminder that casting too wide of a collection net for intelligence can be a distraction from the analysis necessary to stop plots — and, I’d argue, push us further from the fundamental reform necessary for our intelligence agencies to successfully counter terrorism…

The NSA should keep close watch on suspected terrorists to keep our country safe — through programs permitting due process, the naming of a suspect, and oversight by an accountable court. The sacrifice of our personal liberty for security is and will forever be a false choice, and I refuse to relinquish our Constitutional rights to opportunistic and overreaching politicians.


It’s Time to End Orwellian Surveillance of Every American

Senator Bernie Sanders — TIME

I welcome a federal appeals court ruling that the National Security Agency does not have the legal authority to collect and store data on all U.S. telephone calls. Now Congress should rewrite the expiring eavesdropping provision in the so-called USA Patriot Act and include strong new limits to protect the privacy and civil liberties of the American people…

Under legislation I have proposed, intelligence and law enforcement authorities would be required to establish a reasonable suspicion, based on specific information, in order to secure court approval to monitor business records related to a specific terrorism suspect.

Let me be clear: We must do everything we can to protect our country from the serious potential of another terrorist attack. We can and must do so, however, in a way that also protects the constitutional rights of the American people and maintains our free society.

Hillary Clinton — Twitter Feed


Now’s No Time to End NSA Program

Sen. Marco Rubio — USA Today

There is not a single documented case of abuse of this program. Internet search providers, Internet-based email accounts, credit card companies and membership discount cards used at the grocery store all collect far more personal information on Americans than the bulk metadata program.

FBI Director James Comey warned last week that potentially, thousands of terrorist sympathizers in the United States are being self-radicalized online by foreign terrorists associated with the Islamic State who are urging them to conduct attacks against Americans in our cities and towns.

Given these threats, now is not the time to end this program, which remains essential to our security. Congress has until the end of May to act before the current authorities expire. We must renew these authorities and provide those we charge with protecting us every tool they need to do so.


Will Congress Reject Today’s Dangerous NSA Ruling by Reauthorizing the Patriot Act?

John Yoo — The National Review

The Senate may favor a bill that simply reauthorizes the Patriot Act, which should give it the chance to make clear it rejects the Court’s ruling. The House might require that telecom companies hold the database, which would still amount to a rejection of the Second Circuit’s decision. Or the decision could embolden critics of electronic surveillance, who were otherwise going to lose the debate, into gumming up the works and allowing the law to expire. In that worst possible result, our judges would bear responsibility for disarming our nation at a time when foreign threats are on the rise and attacks in the U.S. are in the offing.


Comments are closed.