Let Congress Know We're Watching!
In February, the House of
Representatives heard the demands of voters like you and stood up to
Bush administration demands for expanded surveillance powers and
immunity for big phone companies that broke the law. But now, House
leadership is on the precipice of caving in and handing over everything
the President has demanded.
Your representative must hear that there will be a major backlash if he
or she caves on FISA. Let
your representative know you're watching.
Late Friday night, the ACLU caught wind of a dangerous backroom deal
brewing. The “deal” would rush a House vote that would push through a
dangerous sellout on government spying powers, possibly in the next few
you to immediately contact your member of Congress. Let your
representative know you’re watching and expect him or her to stand
firm. That means no immunity for lawbreaking phone and internet
companies, and no spying on Americans without a warrant.
your member of Congress know you’re watching!
Back in February, the
House stood up to President Bush’s fear-mongering tactics by letting
the so-called “Protect America Act” expire. This ill-named bill
eviscerated the protections of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance
Act (FISA) and violated the constitutional rights of Americans.
breakthrough victory for civil liberties came only because you and
other ACLU activists refused to yield. Because of your emails and phone
calls, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer rallied defenders of freedom
to hold their ground.
But now, word comes that
House leadership may be working hand-in-hand with Senator Jay
Rockefeller, the Democratic Chairman of the Senate Intelligence
Committee, who has spearheaded efforts to give immunity to law-breaking
phone companies that provided mountains of customer data to the
government without warrants.
discussions continue, it’s critical that House leadership avoid
buckling to pressure from the White House or Senator Rockefeller at all
costs. House leadership -- and every representative -- need to
draw a line in the sand by rejecting any compromise that would undo the
achievement we fought so hard for in February.
mistake: any "compromise" that is acceptable to Senator Rockefeller and
the President will undoubtedly let lawbreakers off the hook and
seriously put at risk -- or even end -- lawsuits that may be the only
way to get to the bottom of crimes that were committed by phone
companies and Bush administration officials.
that the House Stand Firm on FISA!
make it clear. We won’t tolerate:
- Backroom deals on telecom
immunity. Lawsuits may be our last chance to expose the truth about
illegal spying activities by telecom companies and the Bush
- Backroom deals that let
election year fear-mongering steal our freedom and undermine the rule
- Backroom deals that give Bush
new powers to spy on Americans without a warrant.
help, we have worked relentlessly to protect freedom in the
long-running FISA debate. Now, we need to make sure all that work isn’t
undone by backroom deals. So, please, urge
your representative to stand firm.
make sure every member of Congress knows how proud we are that the
House has stood its ground and how outraged we will be if our
representatives and House leadership reverse themselves now.
Caroline Fredrickson, Director
ACLU Washington Legislative Office
you’ve emailed your representative, don’t forget to follow up with a phone
125 Broad Street, 18th Floor New York, NY 10004