Rep. Blum Votes Against Reauthorization of Government Surveillance Programs

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Washington, January 11, 2018 | comments

Consistent with his record to protect the Fourth Amendment rights of his constituents, Rep. Rod Blum voted against reauthorizing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). As the name suggests, the program was initially enacted with the focus of gathering intelligence on foreign actors but was expanded by the USA Patriot Act in 2001 to include surveillance of U.S. citizens.

Rep. Blum commented on his vote, “I respect the work of our intelligence community and law enforcement agencies to protect U.S. citizens from harm within the country and overseas, but I cannot support flagrant violations of the Fourth Amendment. I co-sponsored Congressman Amash’s proposed Amendment because I continue to be concerned about unauthorized government intrusion in private communications between U.S. citizens, and I believe this amendment would have addressed these underlying issues such as ensuring proper warrants are in place before obtaining information on U.S. citizens. Unfortunately, this amendment was not included in the final bill, and that is why I voted NO on continuing these unconstitutional surveillance practices.”

In 2015, Congressman Blum voted against reauthorizing and expanding these authorities in the USA Freedom Act. In 2016 and 2017, Congressman Blum co-sponsored and voted for the Email Privacy Act, further protecting the Fourth Amendment rights of U.S. citizens.

Groups in favor of Congressman Blum’s position include Indivisible, FreedomWorks, the Sunlight Foundation, ACLU, NAACP, TechFreedom, Demand Progress, Electronic Frontier Foundation, and The Cato Institute.

The full text of the bill can be found here

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