Monday, May 23, 2005

Bill Gives Justice Department More Power to Demand Private Records

News from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

EFF Obtains Draft PATRIOT Bill

Bill Gives Justice Department More Power to Demand Private Records

On Thursday, May 26, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence will consider in closed session a draft bill that would both renew and expand various USA PATRIOT Act powers. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has obtained a copy of the draft bill, along with the committee's summary of it, and has made them available to journalists and interested citizens on its website,

"Even though Congress is still debating whether to renew the broad surveillance authorities granted by the original USA PATRIOT Act, the Justice Department is already lobbying for even more unchecked authority to demand the private records of citizens who are not suspected of any crime," said Kevin Bankston, EFF attorney and Equal Justice Works/Bruce J. Ennis Fellow. "The Senate's intelligence committee should focus on adding checks and balances to protect against abuse of already-existing PATRIOT powers, or repealing them altogether, rather than working to expand them behind closed doors."

Draft of new PATRIOT Act powers.

Senate Select Committee summary.

Kevin Bankston
Attorney, Equal Justice Works / Bruce J. Ennis Fellow
Electronic Frontier Foundation

Lee Tien
Senior Staff Attorney
Electronic Frontier Foundation


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