Senate rejects Patriot Act spying…but it’s not dead 

Dear Friend of Digital Freedom,

Good news! We’re not the only ones who think one more day of NSA spying is one day too many. The Senate agrees. Last week, in a dramatic late night session, the Senate rejected reauthorization of Section 215 of the Patriot Act.

The Senate’s refusal to reauthorize Patriot Act spying has proven just how wrong the NSA’s defenders are. They’ve acted as though reauthorization of bulk phone records collection of millions of ordinary people was inevitable. But S.1357, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s two-month reauthorization of Section 215 of the Patriot Act, failed by 45-54. In a desperate last-ditch effort to save mass surveillance, McConnell asked for the program to be extended to the 8th of June, then the 5th, then the 3rd, and then the 2nd. He was denied every time.

That means, thanks to the powerful voices of people like you, 54 Senators voted against rubber stamping reauthorization of Section 215 of the Patriot Act. That’s a major victory for civil liberties.

But surveillance defenders will do anything they can to protect the NSA’s powers. Senator McConnell is forcing the Senate to reconvene on Sunday, May 31, mere hours before Section 215 expires. Even though leadership in the House of Representatives has said that the House would reject short-term reauthorization, he’s attempting to bully the Senate into a last minute extension of the program.

Fortunately, we’ve got four days to make sure that those 54 Senators don’t change their minds. We’ve got four days to remind the House that no reauthorization is acceptable, no matter how short. We’ve got four days to ensure that when Section 215 of the Patriot Act dies at midnight on June 1st, it’s dead for good.

Please join us in demanding an end to NSA mass surveillance. Call Congress now.

You can also do more. This week, many Senators and Representatives are at home. Face-to-face visits are a chance for you to challenge your elected representatives on NSA spying. We’ve created a printable one-pager you can leave at their office. We also have a guide to setting up a meeting with your elected representatives. If you can’t get a meeting, you can just drop in at their office.

We’ve got just four days. Join us to tell Congress—It’s time to let Section 215 of the Patriot Act die the death it deserves. Vote no on any reauthorization of Section 215.


EFF Activism Team