LLPH urges all Senators to vote against any Patriot Act renewal, short-term or long-term. We oppose any clean reauthorizations of the Patriot Act, whether it be 5 days, 2 months, 6 months, one year, three years, or any other time period. The Patriot Act, specifically section 215, will expire if the Senate does not do anything. That is exactly what LLPH believes the Senate should allow to happen. We will therefore oppose any clean reauthorization of the Patriot Act.
The Senate may also consider the USA Freedom Act, sent to them by the House of Representatives. While this bill is supposed to be an improvement compared to a clean reauthorization of the Patriot Act, we have strong concerns about the bill. The USA Freedom Act would ask telephone companies to be the ones to collect bulk data and store them instead of the federal government. With a federal court having ruled that the Patriot Act never allowed for the collection of bulk data in the first place, we are concerned that the USA Freedom Act would codify and legalize bulk data collection for the first time in United States history. We hope the Senate will allow amendments offered by Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) to receive votes and urge Senators to vote YES on these amendments to improve the bill.
Without votes on these amendments and in its current form, LLPH will urge all Senators to vote NO on Final Passage of the USA Freedom Act. We may possibly score this vote in our scorecard. IF improving amendments are passed, we will withdraw our objections to the USA Freedom Act.
Bulk data collection must end. Any bill whether it be a clean reauthorization or the USA Freedom Act in its current form that allows for bulk data collection is absolutely unacceptable, and we urge NO votes on all these bills.