Entry for December 14, 2005

The above illustration is from Mike Keefe, cartoonist for the Denver Post.  Yesterday, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)  called on Senators to reject the conference committee’s agreement on legislation to reauthorize the Patriot Act.  It urged Senators to vote against a motion for cloture.  Said Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office: 

The Senate must stand true to its role as the ‘saucer that cools the tea,’ and reject pressures to hastily pass a faulty bill.

Said Lisa Graves, ACLU Senior Counsel for Legislative Strategy:

Congress must not let a fake threat by proponents of Patriot Act to let it expire to cause them to support a defective bill. Common sense corrections that would better focus limited resources and protect the privacy of innocent Americans already enjoy strong bipartisan support. Lawmakers should adopt them.

Lack of substantive reforms to the law have united such unusual allies including former Republican Congressman Bob Barr (R-GA), and the American Librarian Association have all voiced their opposition to the conference report.

Gathering were Senators Russ Feingold (D-WI) and John Sununu (R-NH) and members of the coalition of conservatives and progressives, Patriots to Restore Checks and Balances (chaired by former Republican Georgia Congressman Bob Barr and including Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, American Civil Liberties Union, American Conservative Union, Americans for Tax Reform, American Policy Center, Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Free Congress Foundation, Libertarian Party ,  and the Gun Owners of America.  The American Library Association also opposes the conference committee report.

Ongoing analysis can be found on the ACLU’s blog on the Patriot Act. 

(I’ve got more to write about Feingold and Sununu, but the bookgroup is discussing Penelope Lively’s The Photograph and I spent a lot of time editing Tookie entry on Wikipedia in preparation for Free Press story.)

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