Congress extends Patriot Act, no new protections | Reuters
Now that the Dems have reauthorized the PATRIOT Act in all its library-searchin', wiretap-gettin', lone wolf-trackin' glory, maybe that can be an end to the unnecessary partisanship we saw over this issue during the past 9 years. I recognize that there are many people (on both sides) who oppose the PATRIOT Act and various provisions for all sorts of principled reasons, and I don't mean to imply that I think there's anything wrong with that. What I did not approve of were those who opposed the bill simply to gain a partisan advantage. Now that both sides have acknowledged that this is necessary, maybe we can see a ratcheting down of tensions over issues like this.On vote of 315-97, the House of Representatives approved the bill, a day after it cleared the Senate. It now heads to President Barack Obama to sign into law.
The Obama administration wanted to extend the measure because of provisions it says are important in tracking suspected terrorists, including roving wiretaps to track multiple communications devices. But some lawmakers wanted additional privacy measures to protect against abuses.
The extended provisions include: authority for "roving wiretaps" to track an individual's use of multiple communications devices; gaining access to certain personal and business records; and tracking so-called "lone wolf" suspects who are not members of an organized enemy group.