Yesterday, on January 16th, Senator Rand Paul took to the senate floor pleading to his fellow Senators to make changes to Section 702 of FISA. Senator Paul, Senator Mike Lee, along with members of the Freedom Caucus in the house such as Thomas Massie and Justin Amash, have been fighting for two major changes to be made to the current Section 702 of FISA . First if a government official wants to snoop through an American’s data and records, they should have to get a warrant signed by a judge before they’re allowed to peak into your personal life. Secondly, since the information was gathered before a warrant was signed, it should not be used against the American since the information was mined with a “less-than-constitutional standard”.
Sadly, both Mississippi Senators, Roger Wicker and Thad Cochran, voted to end discussion yesterday on this alarming matter by voting in favor of the motion to invoke cloture on Senate Bill 139. This should not come as a surprise to Mississippians, both Senator Wicker and Senator Cochran constantly vote in opposition to the fourth amendment. Both senators have been highly in favor of the Patriot Act, and snooping through American’s data and records with little to no oversight.
The blame doesn’t stop there for the Mississippi delegation in Washington. Last Thursday by a vote of 233-183, the house defeated the Amash Amendment, which would have made the changes mentioned above to Section 702 of FISA. Voting against the Amash Amendment was representatives Steven Palazzo and Gregg Harper. While representatives Benny Thompson, and Trent Kelly took a stand in bipartisan efforts to help restore the fourth amendment by voting in favor of The Amash Amendment. However, Representative Kelly did fall in line with Steven Palazzo and Gregg Harper in voting in favor of continuing Section 702 of FISA as it currently sits after the Amash Amendment failed.
Since when is it extreme to support the constitution? The fourth amendment states the following:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Our personal records and data are protected under the fourth amendment. No government entity has the right to just snoop through our personal lives without probable cause and a warrant. Reauthorizing bad, unconstitutional laws is a mistake. Only eight republicans voted the correct way in the senate yesterday. It’s time that conservatives demand our representatives and senators vote conservative, by voting for liberty.
In a GOP Presidential debate in 2015 Senator Rand Paul proclaimed the following, “And I’m proud of standing for the Bill of Rights and I will continue to stand for the Bill of Rights.“ If we want to restore our republic, it’s time those of us who love and cherish liberty take a stand for The Bill of Rights as well. I urge Mississippians to contact Roger Wicker, Thad Cochran, Steven Palazzo, Gregg Harper, and Trent Kelly and demand to know why they voted against the Constitution.