I find it laughable that news outlets immediately went on the attack about the NSA collecting phone records. They immediately attacked the Obama administration for violating civil rights, before they had all the information. I find it odd that Republican lawmakers were informed about this, yet say they weren’t completely informed. Where they not reading their briefings? They also didn’t seem willing to mention it was part of the Patriot Act. Why now was this TOP SECRET document released? Isn’t it odd that it coincides with other “scandals”.
Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Chair women of the Senate Intellegence Committee says the top secret court order for telephone records is a 3 month renewal of a continuing program that has been in place since 2006. That’s a whole 3 years before President Obama took office. Senator Feinstein said that the surveillance is lawful and Congress has been fully briefed on the practice.
Her Republican counterpart, Saxby Chambliss agreed, ” This is nothing new. This has been going on for years and EVERY member of the U.S. Senate has been advised of this. To my knowledge there has not been any citizen who has registered a complaint. It has proved meritorious because we have collected significant information on bad guys, but only bad guys, over the years.” He said that every Senator was briefed on this, all of them, Republicans and Democrats. If this is violating civil rights and President Obama is wrong, Republicans are complicit and thereby just as wrong.
The statements of the Senators rule out that the surveillance was in response to the Boston Marathon Bombing. The order was effective April 19, shortly after the bombing, sparking speculation of a link. Despite revealing the duration of the surveillance, the Senators did not specify why the surveillance is in place. I guess that is why it is TOP SECRET, there are some things the public shouldn’t know, or it will get in the papers and possibly harm our anti-terrorist experts. The court order was authorized under a provision of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, that allows the government to collect business records in bulk if the request is approved by the court. What are Phone companies business records, call data, numbers, call origins and data used. Fits under the law, a law that Republicans helped put in place.
Much to the chagrin of Conservative media, the Patriot Act was George W. Bush’s baby. Republucan born and bipartisanly voted on. President Obama said ge would use this as long as he got a court order, he has one. Was it a violation of civil rights when a Republican President was doing it? I heard no complaints then. The Prophet Glenn Beck is painting himself into a corner. First he says President Obama is weak on terrorism, then when he uses Bush’s tactics he is violating civil rights. Which is it Glenn? Can’t have it both ways. Why don’t you tell your listeners at least a portion of the truth, instead of painting President Obama and Democrats as evil.