House Speaker Johnson pulled both bills discussed below, from the floor after facing backlash from other Republicans for allowing both bills to be entered at once. The result is not known at this time. Please do read on, for information on what was proposed. It is imperative that we know what is happening in our Police State.
I will update you as soon as Congress moves forward.
There are two competing bills in House committees at the moment, which concern spying on American citizens. Both are proposed as replacement for Sec. 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which expires 12/31/23. It is imperative that Americans understand this proposed legislation, and a bit of the history of the long-running communist-style surveillance of citizens here in the land of the free. This didn’t just start with 9/11.
FISA was first made into law in 1978, by Democrats in Congress, following the Watergate scandal. “In Dec., 1974, NY Times reporter, Seymour Hirsch, revealed the existence of a long-running CIA intell program targeting American citizens, which was a direct violation of its charter.” This was shortly after Nixon resigned. Two of the Watergate burglars were former CIA, and were assisted by the agency in the aftermath of the Nixon scandal.
The “family jewels” was the tag given to the review of highly secret and inappropriate CIA activities that had been done against Americans since the 1960’s. The details of this report were not released until 2007, just before Obama took over. With the help of a state media, the family jewels were hidden away and soon forgotten.
A main component of the Watergate issue, and the CIA actors involved therein, was the creation of the FISA courts, which were to review requests from law enforcement and intell agencies who wished to do surveillance on “any foreign power OR AGENTS OF A FOREIGN POWER in the US.” The FISA Court consisted of originally seven, then eleven (as of 2001) federal district judges.
After 9/11, FISA surveillance orders and their duration had been significantly expanded by the US Patriot Act. As of 2013, the FISA Court had only turned down ONE DOZEN of over 34,000 requests it had received to surveil.
I think you get it from here. Please take a few minutes and read the hyperlink above, to history.com for additional detail.
This is the same FISA court’s warrants that are in the pending legislation in our Congress before year-end, and here, in brief, are the bills.
The first bill is from Intell.
The The House Select Committee on Intelligence has proposed legislation known as the “FISA Reform and Reauthorization Act”. This legislation expands the internet connection dragnet to include public Wi-Fi offered in restaurants, libraries, etc. If this should become law, it could compel various businesses which provide Wi-Fi services, to help spy on you by forcing them to allow the government access to your communications. Many say that this bill “marks biggest surveillance expansion on citizens since the Patriot Act.”
The second bill is from Judiciary.
The House Judiciary Committee has written a competing bill - the “Protect Liberty and End Warrantless Surveillance” bill. This mandates that the FBI MUST obtain a warrant before using FISA courts against US Citizens. This bill has strong bi-partisan support. This is really nothing more than a return to the original intent of the FISA court, from which we have strayed, as was evident in the Police State documentary.
One or the other piece of legislation is likely to be passed before 702 expires in approximately two weeks, 12/31/2023.
The choice seems simple at first glance - but like everything “political” it is not. The bill from House Judiciary, which sounds stronger and better for our freedom, may end up getting attached to the National Defense Authorization Act. This is a trick of those who want to kill bills that they don’t want to openly oppose. Says the Constitutional Nobody, in USSAnews.com, “This tactic could force lawmakers to choose between supporting military funding and opposing the expansion of surveillance powers.” Another government “gotcha”.
Call your representatives now. Make your messages short and direct. If you want to avoid conversation/argument with a staffer, leave a phone message after hours. Then they MUST listen before erasing. Emails are easier to delete.
Just because we think the House is controlled by “Republicans”, does NOT mean that this legislation is going to help to protect our Constitutional rights. We know the margin is slim, and most “Republicans” have dirty money in their pockets in one way or another. Call and let them know that you know, and that you expect a vote for freedom.
We cannot live free in a Police State.