A Message From the ACLU|
2003-09-24, 7:14 p.m.
From: Matt Howes, National Internet Organizer, ACLU
To: ACLU Action Network Members
Date: September 23, 2003
We are asking that you take two related actions this week: one urging the Senate to fix the PATRIOT Act and another asking Congress as a whole to oppose the expansion of unnecessary surveillance and other police powers that threaten civil liberties. These actions are necessary because of an unusual split in Washington -- many in Congress are working to fix the more dangerous portions of the PATRIOT Act while President Bush, Attorney General Ashcroft and their allies continue to push for new and expanded law enforcement powers.
1) Earlier this month, the House voted overwhelmingly during consideration of an appropriations bill to bar the Justice Department from using the “sneak and peek” warrants authorized in the PATRIOT Act. Despite the 309 to 118 vote in the House against the use of these black bag searches, the Senate has yet to act.
The Senate is now poised to consider its version of the Justice Department appropriations measure and needs your support to adopt fixes like those adopted by the House.
Take Action! Urge your Senators to fix the problems with the PATRIOT Act, not give the government even more invasive and intrusive police powers.
Click here for more information and to send a free fax to your Senators:
2) Oppose New Surveillance Powers
Senator Hatch and other allies of Attorney General Ashcroft are expected shortly to introduce the so-called “Victory Act,” a measure that would make some drug offenses a terrorist crime and allow the government new latitude in questioning people and demanding personal documents without court oversight.
This new legislation contains many provisions that were part of the leaked PATRIOT Act II and that were rejected from the original PATRIOT Act drafts. This is clearly part of a larger Ashcroft campaign to promote greater surveillance powers and remove judicial review.
Take Action! Your elected representatives in Congress need to hear that you support proper checks and balances, not unlimited government surveillance.
Click here for more information and to send a free fax to your Members of Congress:
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To find out what more you can do to protect your civil liberties, please visit http://www.aclu.org/action
"Let us rise up tonight with a greater readiness. Let us stand with a greater determination. And let us move on in these powerful days, these days of challenge to make America what it ought to be. We have an opportunity to make America a better nation." - Martin Luther King, Jr.