U.S. House Backs Obama's Drone Strikes, NSA Spying
July 25, 2013 3:17 PM
comment(s) - last by
(Source: NJ Today)
A razor thin majority said the government should continue to carefully monitor 99 percent of Americans
Just over half of the U.S. House of Representatives approve of the federal government spending billions to police not only terrorists and criminals, but also
the lives of the
98+ percent of Americans
. The razor thin majority argues that to be free of terror, Americans must be willing to give up their freedoms and rights -- including the right to privacy.
I. Libertarian Effort to Restore Privacy is Shot Down in Congress
A proposed amendment to the U.S. Defense Appropriations Bill (
), an annual measure to fund the defense and intelligence agencies, would have "turned off Big Brother" by scaling back spying by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA), who tracks the movements of smartphone-using Americans on a daily basis.
Backed by an unlikely alliance of civil libertarians from both sides of the aisle, such as
Rep. Ron Paul
(R-Tex.), both sides came together to try to pass the amendment. The amendment (
H.Amend 100, H.R. 2397
) was authored by
Rep. Justin Amash
Rep. John Conyers
In the end it came up just 12 votes short of passing, with 422 votes cast.
The amendment came up just 12 votes short of passing. [Image Source: NYT]
II. Republicans to Obama : We Have Your Back
Rep. Michelle Bachmann
(R.-Minn.) was among the critics of the amendment. In total, Republicans voted 94 yay and 134 nay on the bill, while Democrats had 111 yays and 83 nays.
The lack of Republican support for the amendment and the strong Democratic support was equally surprising, given that
the Bush administration's programs
of the domestic surveillance
has been a key internal objective
of President Barack Hussein Obama (D) and democrats in the Senate.
[Image Source: ACLU]
In short, Republicans in the House appear to be mostly
in support of President Obama
and Senate Democrats on the issue, and in opposition of their libertarian colleagues.
Rep. John Boehner
(R-Ohio) was a powerful proponent of federal spying spending within his party's ranks. He characterizes people who oppose the spying, such as NSA leaker Edward Snowden
Republicans in the House have largely supported Obama's spying efforts. [Image Source: AP]
Meanwhile, Democrats in the House are boldly defying their party colleagues both in the Democratic Senate majority and in the White House (a handful of civil libertarian Democrats in the Senate, such as
Sen. Ron Wyden
do oppose ubiquitous spending on spying on Americans
House Republicans have also been crucial supporters of the President's program of
warrantless killings of Americans who in deems "terrorists"
. They have fought efforts to ban the
armed drones on U.S. soil
, arguing that the drones might one day be necessary to starting hunting down and killing off terrorists on U.S. soil.
Rep. Peter King
I’m not concerned [with the casualty rate]. My belief is that when you are in a war — and we are in a war — the idea is to kill as many of the enemy as you can [even if the enemy is your own people].
There’s evil people in the world. Drones aren’t evil, people are evil. We are a force of good and we are using those drones to carry out the policy of righteousness and goodness.
The New York Republican recently called for efforts to stomp out freedom of the press,
urging federal prosecutors to charge journalists
who leaked details of and criticized the NSA spying program with Espionage charges. Despite the fact that the drone strikes
killed few members of al-Qaeda's leadership
, he says that it's worth
preserving the option to kill Americans
without having to worry about due process.
Republicans have fought to preserve the Obama administration's privilege to kill Americans it deems "terrorist" with warrantless drone missile strikes. [Image Source: Drone Wars UK]
Rep. King and
Rep. Mac Thornberry
(R-Tex.) were among the key Republicans in
shooting down an amendment
to the National Defense Authorization Act (
Rep. Dennis Kucinich
(D-Ohio) which would have forced U.S. drone operators to know the identity of a target before killing someone.
III. President Chastises House Democrats for Trying to Limit His Spying on Americans
President Obama's press secretary, Jay Carney, praised House Republicans' decision to support the ongoing spying on Americans. In a previous statement Mr. Carney (on the President's behalf)
We oppose the current effort in the House to hastily dismantle one of our Intelligence Community’s counterterrorism tools. This blunt approach is not the product of an informed, open, or deliberative process. We urge the House to reject the Amash Amendment, and instead move forward with an approach that appropriately takes into account the need for a reasoned review of what tools can best secure the nation.
President Obama has had no tolerance for his party colleagues' efforts to stop him from spying. [Image Source: AP]
A separate Amendment --
Rep. Mike Pompeo
. It states:
None of funds made available by this Act may be used by the National Security Agency to—(1) conduct an acquisition pursuant to section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 for the purpose of targeting a United States person; or (2) acquire, monitor, or store the contents (as such term is defined in section 2510 of title 18, United States Code) of any electronic communication of a United States person from a provider of electronic communication services to the public pursuant to section 501 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978.
However, many have pointed out that the bill in question
forbids content (e.g. voice conversation) collection on non-suspects. Hence, the amendment is essentially a false flag that does nothing. It
limit the collection (and spending on collection) of metadata, including location tracking records, as Rep. Amash's amendment would have.
Rep. Amash (R) vowed not to let the defeat stop his efforts to restore law abiding Americans' right to privacy. He and Rep. Conyers
have introduced a new bill
called the LIBERT-E Act (
), which would offer similar scalebacks to his H.R. 2397 amendment. That Bill is currently in the committee stage.
House Republican Justin Amash isn't afraid to defy his colleagues and yet again try to fight for American's right to privacy. [Image Source: Getty Images]
Ultimately, the House Republicans and President Obama's unity on the importance of erasing the rights to privacy is a sign that the
terrorists have achieved their goal of impacting the lives of Americans
, forcing them to lose privacy they once had and to pay for it to boot.
NYT: H.R. 2397 Amendment 101 Vote
Rep. John Amash (R)
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: A taste of your own medicine!
7/26/2013 3:11:40 PM
And many of your Sunni neighbors have done equally as terrible things to your people, if not worse. Nobody is saying that everything the USA does is good, or that we agree with it... in fact, most of us think we shouldn't be causing trouble abroad. But, you're going to have to give up on this hatred passed down from generation to generation if you wants things to be civil. I think Iran would be a good ally to have.
RE: A taste of your own medicine!
7/26/2013 5:57:12 PM
See, you are already threatening with war. That is all you can do. Zombicans on the march. Already. So, you want us to love you after all this? Forgive and forget you say. So that you can do it to us again? How civil. How genius. Zombie genius. Granted, nobody could live with that much guilt on his conscience, if he has any. And you seem to have some. Never mind that you still consider amnesia your best friend. We will never forget. Count on that. And we will never be your partner in crime, what you call an ally. Your ally is the king of Saudi Arabia and those little medieval Sheikhs, and the Al-Qaeda in Syria and everywhere, and that little thingy that cannot be named in polite society, and colonialist has beens as in UK and France, and Marshal Islands and Paualuauauwauaoo. Your ally!? What a grizzly idea.
RE: A taste of your own medicine!
7/26/2013 6:10:07 PM
Use Google translate. I didn't threaten war, or even mention it. I think you just thrive on conflict. You're more "American" than I am. Such irony. It is a little cool that you guys are into zombie films like we are, though.
Speaking of which, would you clean up places like Saudia Arabia? I find their culture distasteful.
RE: A taste of your own medicine!
7/27/2013 4:30:09 PM
I do share the sentiment about Saudi Arabia. But that is something that the people of Saudi Arabia have to take care of. The easiest way to get it done though, is for America to get out of the Persian Gulf and Middle East, which again goes against the very fiber of America, which is imperialism, not to mention that little thingy cuntry that cannot be named in polite society that controls American politics and will not allow it to do so under any circumstances. So, I suppose you have to carry the burden of such best friends for a while. Unless you choose to get rid of that little thingy which would be a great favor to humanity in general. And you do not need to to travel 20,000 miles. They are right next to you, actually above you, in America.
"This week I got an iPhone. This weekend I got four chargers so I can keep it charged everywhere I go and a land line so I can actually make phone calls." -- Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg
ACLU Sues Over Feds Spending up to $1.4B to Monitor Millions of Americans
July 19, 2013, 2:24 PM
Source: Don't Worry, NSA Spies on "99 Percent" of Americans' Locations, Call Records
June 14, 2013, 3:57 PM
Rep. Peter King (R) on NSA Leaks: Prosecute the Journalists
June 12, 2013, 4:00 PM
ACLU Sues Government for Tracking Citizens; Boehner Calls NSA Leaker a "Traitor"
June 11, 2013, 8:46 PM
Rep. Ron Paul Calls NSA Spying a Victory for Terrorists, Some Senators Say It's Fine
June 7, 2013, 6:46 AM
Microsoft to Discontinue Free, Ad-supported Xbox Music Service on December 1
October 23, 2014, 10:03 AM
Christian Bale Confirmed to Play Steve Jobs in Upcoming Film
October 23, 2014, 8:43 AM
Monica Lewinsky Speaks Out, Calls Herself "Patient-Zero" for Internet Cyberbullying
October 21, 2014, 2:25 PM
Google Fiber Finally Heading to Austin, Texas in December
October 16, 2014, 11:48 AM
Dropbox Flexes Security Muscle, Appears to Have Squashed Password Breach
October 15, 2014, 12:12 PM
U2’s Bono Apologizes for Forced “Songs of Innocence” Album Downloads
October 15, 2014, 7:55 AM
Most Popular Articles
Chinese Government Declares Digital War Against America's Top Tech Firms
October 20, 2014, 12:07 PM
Report: 2015 Ford Focus Electric MSRP Slashed by $6,000, Will Retail for $29,995
October 18, 2014, 6:23 PM
Apple Releases iOS 8.1; Adds Apple Pay Support, SMS Relay, Instant Hotspot
October 20, 2014, 1:00 PM
Windows 8.1 + Android "Sell Mini PC" w/ Bay Trail Creates New PC Form Factor
October 20, 2014, 5:07 PM
Update: Motorola Droid Turbo Coming Oct 28, 48-hour Battery Life Confirmed
October 19, 2014, 9:19 PM
Latest Blog Posts
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information