View Full Version : Freedom Act 'Close' One Year After Amash's NSA Attempt

07-24-2014, 09:56 AM
Freedom Act 'Close' One Year After Amash's NSA Attempt
Time is ticking for surveillance reform this year.

By Steven Nelson and Tom Risen
July 23, 2014 | 5:02 p.m. EDT

One year ago Thursday, the House of Representatives nearly cut the purse strings for the National Security Agency’s bulk collection and five-year retention of U.S. phone records with the so-called Amash amendment.

Whistleblower Edward Snowden, whose leaks exposed the program a month earlier, was stuck in Moscow’s international airport, his passport canceled, as the Obama administration feverishly pleaded with House members not to kill the dragnet it claimed was needed to prevent terrorism.

The anti-surveillance camp, led by Michigan Reps. Justin Amash, a Republican, and John Conyers, a Democrat, came within 12 votes of a win.

“The Amash amendment really created some momentum that has carried through, it helped rally the public behind our effort,” Amash tells U.S. News. He believes there was majority support for the amendment, but that House leaders strong-armed members.

“I feel very confident going forward, I think the message has been sent to people in leadership,” he says.


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