Listen to "Reality Check with Ben Swann" on Spreaker.

After Senate Fails to Extend PATRIOT Act, NSA Begins Shutdown of Bulk Spying Program

Due to the fact that the US Senate failed to reauthorize the PATRIOT Act last week, the Obama administration has begun to wind down the National Security Agency's bulk collection of Americans' phone records.

Must Read

One on One Interview: Libertarian Presidential Candidate Adam Kokesh

In this episode of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, Libertarian Presidential candidate Adam Kokesh breaks down his campaign and explains his policies in detail.

ABC News Buried Epstein Story?

In this episode of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, we’re taking a look at new footage from Project Veritas revealing that ABC News refused to air an explosive story detailing Epstein’s alleged crimes years ago, and a hot mic captures exactly why ABC did so.

Unstoppable Domains

Uncensorable blockchain domains. Every domain purchase supports Ben Swann and Truth in Media
Barry Donegan
Barry Donegan is a writer, musician, and pro-liberty political activist living in Nashville, TN. Donegan served as Director-at-Large of the Davidson County Republican Party from 2009-2011 and was the Middle Tennessee Regional Coordinator over 30 counties for Ron Paul's 2012 Presidential Campaign. Follow him at facebook.com/barry.donegan and twitter.com/barrydonegan

Last week, the Obama administration said that it would begin winding down the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of Americans’ private phone data if Congress were to fail to reauthorize Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act by Friday. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tried desperately to extend the expiring surveillance authority before senators left town, but was shut down by a coalition of Senate privacy advocates led by Senators Rand Paul and Ron Wyden.

Now, National Journal is reporting that the Obama administration has begun to shut down the program. Said an administration official on Saturday, “We’ve said for the past several days that the wind-down process would need to begin yesterday if there was no legislative agreement. That process has begun.” The NSA’s bulk phone spying program had been ruled illegal by a federal appeals court earlier this month, and its authority granted by a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court order expired on May 22.

Republican Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr said that the Obama administration was being “disingenuous” with its claim that the program’s shutdown had begun and that restarting it after the expiration of the FISA court’s Section 215 authority would not be as complicated as officials made it seem. Burr said that he believed that the real shutdown would take place at 4 PM on May 31, meaning that the Senate would have an opportunity to reauthorize the program in an emergency session now scheduled for Sunday. “The database doesn’t go poof and go away,” said Burr. He continued, “And the White House has been very specific that they wanted this bill passed. This was the most significant lobby on a piece of legislation in the six years I’ve seen the Obama administration.”

- Newsletter -

Last Friday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest urged the Senate to pass the USA FREEDOM Act, a PATRIOT Act alternative that has already passed the House of Representatives, which some say does not include the illegal spying program. However, privacy advocate Congressman Justin Amash (R-MI) says that the USA FREEDOM Act still allows mass surveillance but requires corporations to do it, rather than the government. Earnest blasted McConnell for “playing chicken” with national security programs by pushing for a short-term PATRIOT Act reauthorization instead of the USA FREEDOM Act.

Though senators could reauthorize the expiring Section 215 authority when they return on May 31, the Obama administration said that restarting the program has become more complicated now that the May 22 deadline to submit the application to restart it has passed. “We did not file an application for reauthorization,” said an administration official to National Journal.

 

 

- Advertisement -

Featrued Sponsors

Unstoppable Domains

Uncensorable blockchain domains. Every domain purchase supports Ben Swann and Truth in Media

Holland Center

Holland Center is a day treatment program and medical clinic for children with autism.

Pure VPN

Military grade privacy on all devices.
- Advertisement -

Latest News

video

One on One Interview: Libertarian Presidential Candidate Adam Kokesh

In this episode of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, Libertarian Presidential candidate Adam Kokesh breaks down his campaign and explains his policies in detail.
video

ABC News Buried Epstein Story?

In this episode of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, we’re taking a look at new footage from Project Veritas revealing that ABC News refused to air an explosive story detailing Epstein’s alleged crimes years ago, and a hot mic captures exactly why ABC did so.

Unstoppable Domains

Uncensorable blockchain domains. Every domain purchase supports Ben Swann and Truth in Media
video

The Government’s War on Wikileaks, Assange, Manning and Hammond

In episode 7 of Truth In Media with Ben Swann, we explain the secret grand jury targeting Julian Assange, Chelsea Manning, and Jeremy Hammond, and discuss the government's lasting damage on the lives of whistleblowers in an interview with John Kiriakou.

Protecting Free Speech with Unstoppable Domains

Software company Unstoppable Domains is aiming to put an end to online censorship by providing blockchain-based domains.
- Advertisement -

More Articles Like This