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Dear FreedomWorks member,
As one of our more than 6.9 million FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your representative today and ask him or her to support H.R. 1466, the Surveillance State Repeal Act. Introduced by Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) and Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), the bipartisan bill would restore our civil liberties and stop unconstitutional domestic spying on U.S. citizens.
The Surveillance State Repeal Act would repeal the misguided USA PATRIOT Act and the FISA Amendments Act of 2008. The PATRIOT Act, passed in the panicked aftermath of the tragic September 11th attacks, gives the federal government an unprecedented amount of power to monitor the private communications of U.S. citizens without a warrant. The FISA Amendments Act of 2008 expanded the wiretapping program to grant the government more power. Both laws clearly violate our 4th Amendment right against unreasonable searches.
The Surveillance State Repeal Act would prohibit the government from collecting information on U.S. citizens obtained through private communications without a warrant. It would mandate that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) regularly monitor domestic surveillance programs for compliance with the law and issue an annual report. A section of the bill explicitly forbids the government from mandating that electronic manufacturers install “back door” spy software into their products. This is a legitimate concern due to a recently released security report finding government spying software on hard drives in personal computers in the United States.
It’s important to note that the Surveillance State Repeal Act saves anti-terrorism tools that are useful to law enforcement. It retains the ability for government surveillance capabilities against targeted individuals, regardless of the type of communications methods or devices being used. It would also protect intelligence collection practices involving foreign targets for the purpose of investigating weapons of mass destruction.
We urge you to voice your support for the Surveillance State Repeal Act to stop unconstitutional spying on U.S. citizens. It is our hope that you will ask your representatives to co-sponsor and otherwise support the bill if they have not already done so.
Matt Kibbe President and CEO, FreedomWorks [Click here to read a PDF version of this letter.]