In addition to the immunity provision, civil liberties and privacy groups are opposed to the bill because they say it weakens oversight of the surveillance court and allows the Bush administration to initiate a wiretap without first seeking a warrant.
“It’s Christmas morning at the White House thanks to this vote,” said Caroline Fredrickson, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Washington Legislative Office. “The House just wrapped up some expensive gifts for the administration and their buddies at the phone companies. It is not a meaningful compromise, except of our constitutional rights. The bill allows for mass, untargeted and unwarranted surveillance of all communications coming in to and out of the United States. The courts’ role is superficial at best, as the government can continue spying on our communications even after the FISA court has objected. Democratic leaders turned what should have been an easy FISA fix into the wholesale giveaway of our Fourth Amendment rights.
Congressman Maurice Hinchey, (D-NY), who voted against the surveillance bill, said he understands there is need to update the 1977 FISA law in light of the technological advancements to communications over the past 30 years. But “sacrificing our basic civil liberties and granting de facto immunity to telecommunication companies that may have violated the law to appease the Bush administration is simply unacceptable.”
In a strange twist, Sen. Arlen Specter, (R-Penn.), sparred with Pelosi over the extraordinary powers the Democrats’ bill grants to the White House, saying the legislation does not appear to prevent the White House from initiating surveillance without a court order.
“This proposal dodges" that, Specter said.
Your pretty Pathetic when even Specter thinks you gave away the farm !
Well Madame Speaker You Just Gave Away The 4th Amendment To Our Constitution !
Are You Going To Disneyland Now ?
You Might As Well !
And,Just Keep Going !
Would You Please Resign !
That Is The Greatest Present You Could Give To Your Country and All The Democrats Who Thought There Would Actually Be Change In Congress After The 2006 Elections !
You Have Done Nothing But Mess Up Since You Became Speaker !
Letting A President With 28% Approve Rating Steal The 4th Amendment !
Now That's Hard To Do..
But,Of Course With Your help It Was Easy !
I Could Go On and On..
But,Your Just Not Worth It !
Plus,You Will Never Read This Email Anyways !
But Again,Please Resign For The Good Of Our Country and The Democratic Party !
Thank you,I Guess,M..A Democrat !