In January last year, Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress traded liberty for a little temporary security when they reauthorized Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) through December 2023.
However, not every Republican supported allowing the government to keep and expand its post 9-11 power to electronically spy on anyone … anytime … anywhere. Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) openly opposed it because it “allows the government to conduct warrantless searches on Americans and maintain massive troves of our data” — a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment.
Section 702 of FISA allows the government to conduct warrantless searches on Americans and maintain massive troves of our data—but it is about to expire. Congress now has 15 days to decide whether to protect the #4thAmendment or let the government continue to eviscerate it.
— Justin Amash (@justinamash) January 4, 2018
While liberty lost that battle, the war against Big Brother and Washington’s never-ending assault against our God-given rights protected by the Constitution continues.
Along those lines, Amash has co-sponsored a bill with Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) to amend H.R. 2740, a “minibus” appropriations bill making its way through Congress. The one-page amendment would place tighter limits on the government’s surveillance authority.
The amendment has garnered support from dozens of organizations from across the political spectrum — the ACLU, Freedom Works, and the Liberty Coalition, just to name a few — saying it will “help ensure Section 702 is only used for the purposes Congress intended and would significantly advance the privacy rights of people within the United States.”
Dozens of organizations from across the political spectrum, including @ACLU @FreedomWorks @DemandProgress @EFF and @IndivisibleTeam, support the Amash-Lofgren amendment to #HR2740 to limit the warrantless collection of Americans’ data under FISA 702. pic.twitter.com/NMcgUO5bI2
— Justin Amash (@justinamash) June 18, 2019
In defense of his attempt to rein in FISA, Amash spoke on the House floor where he pointed out the hypocrisy of both parties on this issue — Republicans because they claim they want to rein in the surveillance state and Democrats because they claim they want to rein in the abuse of executive power in the White House.
Ironically, Amash’s proposal would do both while simultaneously protecting our rights.
David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative.
His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.