There was a tiny victory for liberty yesterday when the renewal of the USA PATRIOT Act was defeated because it did not receive a 2/3 majority vote in the U.S. House of Representatives.
I say a tiny victory because there are moves both in the Senate and the House to pass the PATRIOT Act reauthorization. Please take action NOW to ensure that our tiny victory yesterday becomes permanent.
Reconsideration of PATRIOT Act
In the House, the PATRIOT Act renewal will be resubmitted to a Committee and then re-submitted in a different form.
In the Senate, the renewal bill will be considered later this week. If the Senate passes it, then it will go to the House for consideration.
Please contact your Senators and Representatives and tell them that the PATRIOT Act should not be renewed. Here are some talking points.
Margin of Twelve; Kudos to 26 House Republicans
The PATRIOT Act renewal failed last night by a margin of just twelve votes. A coalition of House Democrats concerned about civil liberties and 26 House Republicans skeptical of Big Government crushed the measure by this slim margin.
Here is the vote tally. RLC-endorsed members of Congress Justin Amash (MI), Roscoe Bartlett (MD), Jimmy Duncan (TN), Tom Graves (GA), and Kenny Marchant (TX) voted against the measure.
They were joined in their dissent by Tea Party-supported Representatives Bobby Schilling (IL), Tom McClintock (CA), Dana Rohrabacher (CA), Denny Rehberg (MT), David Schweikert (AZ), Raul Labrador (ID), Randy Hultgren (IL), Mike Fitzpatrick (PA), John Campbell (CA), Paul Broun (GA), Jack Kingston (GA), Rob Woodall (GA), and Walter Jones (NC).
More moderate members of the House Republican Caucus such as Phil Roe (TN), Connie Mack (FL), Tim Johnson (IL), Chris Gibson (NY), Don Young (AK), Rob Bishop (UT), and Dean Heller (NV) also voted against the bill on civil liberties grounds.
Some Tea Party-Supported Representatives Vote Against Liberty
A large coalition of Tea Party-supported members of Congress voted for PATRIOT Act reauthorization. They include:
• Kevin McCarthy (R, CA-22) and Eric Cantor, both members of the House GOP Leadership;
• Michele Bachmann (R, MN-06), the leader of the Tea Party Caucus in the U.S. House and a potential 2012 Presidential candidate;
• Mike Pence (R, IN-06) and Paul Ryan (R, WI-01), potential presidential candidates in 2012 or 2016;
• Rick Berg (R, ND-At Large), a prospective candidate for U.S. Senate in North Dakota;
• Diane Black (R, TN-06) and Marsha Blackburn, both Tea Party-supported Congresswomen from Tennessee;
• Larry Bucshon (R, IN-08) and Todd Young (R, IN-09) recently elected Tea Party-supported Congressmen from southern Indiana;
• Steve Chabot (R, OH-01) and Jim Jordan (R, OH-04), both of whom were endorsed by the RLC in 2010;
• Chip Cravaack (R, MN-08) and Jeff Flake (R, AZ-06), who were endorsed by the RLC in 2010;
• Kristi Noem (R, SD-At Large) and Jamie Herrera (R, WA), young “rising star” Representatives elected with support of the Tea Party
• Blake Farenthold (R, TX-27) and John Culberson (R, TX-07), both said to have libertarian leanings;
• Joe Walsh (R, IL-08) and Bob Dold (R, IL-10), newly elected Representatives from Illinois;
• Lou Barletta (R, PA-11), a Tea Party-supported Congressman who was elected last year;
• Dan Benishek (R, MI-01), a Tea Party candidate from northern Michigan who was elected to Bart Stupak’s seat last year;
• Steve Southerland (R, FL-02) and Steven Palazzo (R, MS-04), Tea Party-supported members of Congress; and
• Allen West (R, FL-22) and Tim Scott (R, SC-01), African American members of the House Republican Caucus.
This vote brings clarity regarding which Republicans “get it” and which simply do not — and may never.
Let’s continue to pressure our Representatives to vote against PATRIOT Act reauthorization, as a vote on this issue is likely to come up very shortly.