Through a procedural move, the Republicans have delayed the vote on the surveillance bill. While still less stringent than the constitutional standard, the Democratic bill increases the need for warrants and judicial review. The GOP motion stated that nothing in the act “shall be construed to prohibit the intelligence community … from conducting surveillance needed to prevent Usama Bin Laden, Al Qaeda, or any other foreign terrorist organization … from attacking the United States or any United States person.” It has rightfully been denounced as another use of Bin Laden for political purposes of delay and an effort to keep fear alive.
Brian Kennedy, spokesman for House Minority leader John Boehner, told FOX that the language is a way to prevent terrorists from getting “lawyered up” and hiding behind the protections of the Fourth Amendment. First, this bill does not follow the fourth amendment, but rather imposes a lower standard. Second, “lawyering” governmental surveillance is precisely what the framers wanted. It continues to be astonishing how members continually use legal process and constitutional rights as the evil to be overcome in the war on terror — rather than the object that we are fighting to preserve. For the full article, click here