WASHINGTON – The House on Monday agreed to a 10-month extension of three key law enforcement powers in the fight against terrorism that some privacy advocates from both the right and left regard as infringements on civil liberties.Read the rest here.
The House measure, passed 275-144, would extend authority for the USA Patriot Act-related provisions until Dec. 8. Common ground must be found with the Senate before the provisions expire on Feb. 28.
At issue are two provisions of the post-Sept. 11 law that give counterterrorism offices roving wiretap authority to monitor multiple electronic devices and court-approved access to business records relating to a terrorist investigation.
The third "lone wolf" provision of a 2004 law permits secret intelligence surveillance of non-U.S. individuals not known to be linked to a specific terrorist organization.
Last week the House, in an embarrassment for the new GOP leadership, failed to pass the same bill under an expedited procedure requiring a two-thirds majority. Twenty-six Republicans joined 122 Democrats in voting against it. Monday's vote drew 27 Republican no votes.
The conservative group Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) announced Saturday that Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) would be expelled from the group's National Advisory Board because of his "delusional and disturbing alliance with the fringe Anti-War movement."Read the rest here.
"It is a sad day in American history when a one-time conservative-libertarian stalwart has fallen more out of touch with America’s needs for national security than the current feeble and appeasing administration," YAF’s Senior National Director Jordan Marks said in a statement.
"Rep. Paul's refusal to support our nation's military and national security interests border on treason, aside from his failure to uphold his oath to the United States Constitution and defend our country and citizens against all enemies, foreign and domestic," Marks continued.
So, a principled opposition to a war of aggression (Iraq) and another war that although I believe justified (Afghanistan) seems to be more and more in support of a corrupt regime is now TREASON? The GOP and its neo-con acolytes throw that term around far too casually for my comfort. God save us from those who would hang or shoot a man (the customary sanction for treason) because he says we are wrong to wage aggressive war and at least some of our problems in the world are of our own creation.