The House voted Thursday to renew for six years a controversial surveillance program that collects the content of Americans’ email, text messages, photos and other electronic communication without a warrant.
The vote was 256-164 to extend the program, known as Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.
An alternative bill by Reps. Justin Amash, R-Mich., and Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., failed by a vote of 183-233. That bill, which had strong support from both liberal and conservative civil liberties groups, would have required federal agents to get warrants before searching through Americans’ data that is collected when the U.S. government spies on foreigners abroad.The Section 702 program was originally approved by Congress in 2008 to increase the government’s ability to track and thwart foreign terrorists in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.
It was designed to spy on foreign citizens living outside the U.S. and specifically bars the targeting of American citizens or anyone residing in the U.S. But critics say the program also sweeps up the electronic data of innocent Americans who may be communicating with foreign nationals, even when those foreigners aren’t suspected of terrorist activity. – READ MORE
Congress is completely controlled by AIPAC, preventing any honest investigation or prosecution of the perps