Senator Wyden Demands Debate Over Patriot Act

from the senator-wyden-hits-again dept

It’s feeling like we should have a weekly section for “kudos to Senator Ron Wyden.” Each week he seems to be the only major elected public official who seems to actually be fighting for the people, rather than for greater power for corporations and government. His latest is that he seems to be one of the few elected officials who are actually pushing for real debate about the “sunsetted” Patriot Act provisions. As you may recall, Congress has been rubber stamping extensions to the three provisions, which allow for very broad surveillance with very little oversight. Each time they extend the provisions, they claim there hasn’t been enough time to debate the provisions, so we should just push it out again. But then no debate actually happens. It looks like Senator Wyden is looking to fix that:

[The Patriot Act] was written and passed six weeks after the worst terrorist attack in our nation’s history. Congress wisely included sunset dates for the Patriot Act’s most controversial provisions, so that they could be thoughtfully considered at a later time. After ten years, it is clearly time for that debate.”

I’d argue it’s well past the time for that debate, but that’s a minor quibble. Wyden is also pushing for legislation that narrows the surveillance provisions of the Patriot Act and further protects our Fourth Amendment rights.

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Comments on “Senator Wyden Demands Debate Over Patriot Act”

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Anonymous Coward says:

More hot air than you average conservative talk show host.

You realize he’s on the left?

I’m an Oregon voter, and have mixed feelings about Wyden. On these sorts of issues, he’s a breath of fresh air. On other issues (primarily fiscal), he’s a fairly typical overspending/overreaching democrat. No worse than most, but no better.

So my support for Wyden tends to shift depending on what I’m more scared of at the moment: National fiscal collapse, or Orwellian police state.

MrWilson says:

Re: Re:

Few politicians are able, much less willing to fix the fiscal issues (except by screwing over citizens and kowtowing to corporations).

Fewer still are willing to stand virtually alone in opposition to legitimately disturbing pieces of legislation.

Wyden is showing that he is the least of quite a few evils. That’s good enough for me.

Charlie Potatoes (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Over spending… left wing… liberal.. DEMOCRAT… oh my. Republicans are masters at spreading spin slime. I recall the surplus when the Bush regime took power and I recall the deficit when BushCheney crawled back under their rock after eight years. We seem to be missing about 14 Trillion dollars. I’d frisk them both if I could. Republicans can say anything they want, but they are still liars and slime. So what if the Democrats are, too? Their fingerprints aren’t on the deficit. Who spent us into this mess? Hint… it wasn’t Bill Clinton and it wasn’t Barack Obama. Nice try, assholes.

Hiiragi Kagami (profile) says:

Interesting first sentence.

It’s feeling like we should have a weekly section for “kudos to Senator Ron Wyden.”
Actually, why doesn’t Techdirt have a “Kudos” section? There have been plenty of positive articles of late and a “Kudos” section would be nice to see.

My first nomination would go to Nina Paley for her recent “copyrights promote lawsuits” comic strip.

Anthony (user link) says:

Sen. Wyden

The debate over these provisions is indeed way overdue, but not to any politicians lack of interest but to the lack of interest of the American public. If the American public was not so apathetic and got off their butts and supported such a debate we would have it. If there is one thing every politician wants more than power and money, it is to be on the side of public opinion.

abc gum says:

Re: I just hope.

“Politicians do not want to be seen as condoning terrorism, thus we have the Patriot Act”

Voting against the patriot act would not necessarily imply “condoning terrorism”. Does anyone really think Feingold or Kucinich condone terrorism? And I doubt anyone thinks the same of the ten who recently voted against it either.

Jim says:

Re: Re: I just hope.

Kucinich does, he is unfortunately my congressman. Went on Syrian TV and Al Jazeera calling the King of Syria a great man. But other than him your point is certainly valid, Dennis is a one of a kind fool. He means well and he has a heart of gold but is totally clueless on what goes on in the world.

Anonymous Coward says:

Senator Ron Wyden is from the wonderful state of Oregon and seems to be the only sensible senator in Washington D.C. He’s right about the Patriot Act. But more than the Patriot Act we need to already clean house at the agency created by the scare tactics of the Patriot Act. Homeland Security!! I don’t feel more secure, but I do feel more harassed, more profiled and basically I hate the sound of their name. I am an American citizen and I want to be left alone. I don’t want to travel. I don’t want a government job and I don’t want to be questioned about every move I make in my life. I just want to be left alone. Go profile some other country.

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