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Tea Party, Progressives and Libertarians Attempt to Block NSA's Prism Fails by Small Margin

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Headlined to H3 7/25/13

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From http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nsa_sign.jpg
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The amendment, offered by Michigan Republican  Justin Amash, truly demonstrated how little difference there is between Democratic and Republican leadership. It also showed how Edward Snowden's revelations not only made a difference, but showed how strong the support for his take on the wrongness of the NSA spying is. 

Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Stenny Hoyer pushed democrats to vote against the amendment to block NSA's Prism spy program. The 216 to 205 vote split both Democrats and Republicans. A swing of just seven votes could have made the vote succeed. This is not over. 

Democrats voted for the amendment by a 111-to-83

Republicans voted 134 "for" versus 93 against it.

The record of how the house members voted is here.

Bottom-line-- house Republicans, led by John Boehner, helped President Obama get the results he wanted, while a majority of House democrats, bucking the leadership of Pelosi and Hoyer, voted against Obama. 

Justin Amash, a 33 year old Michigan Republican, has a record of opposing John Boehner and the Republican leadership. House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor joined with the Democratic leadership to oppose the bill. 

John Conyers was one of the Democrats who led the effort to pass the amendment. Obama sent a message to the house warning that the amendment would make the US less safe and the NSA's claim that 54 terrorist attacks were stopped because of the spying was brandished. 

The Huffingtonpost reported that Amash, said, as he was introducing the bill,
"We're here today for a very simple reason: to defend the Fourth Amendment, to defend the privacy of each and every American," Amash said as he introduced his measure. Lawmakers' votes, he said, would answer one simple question, "Do we oppose the suspicionless collection of every American's phone records?"

and
Pointing to a  Wall Street Journal editorial  that came out Wednesday, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) contended that passing the amendment would reward Snowden.

and
In 2005, Pelosi was stridently opposed to the section of the Patriot Act under debate now. She called the provisions being reauthorized  a "massive invasion of privacy."  But on Wednesday, she voted against reining in the Patriot Act.

The candidate who defeated Dennis Kucinich, a supposed progressive-- Marcy Kaptur (OH)-- voted against the amendment.  So did supposed progressive Jan  Schakowsky.

John Conyers, noting that the house leadership and the White House had lobbied heavily against the bill, said, "... the fact that they won this narrowly means they still are worried -- because this thing isn't over yet. This is just the beginning."

Glancing at the ayes and noes in the congressional roll call, freshman Democrats voted with Pelosi-- likely a sign that the money the Democrat leadership wields to elect members made a difference in this vote. 


Shahid Buttar,  executive director of the  Bill of Rights Defense Committee,  said today: " Given the combined opposition of the GOP leadership in the House and the Democratic establishment in the White House, it is remarkable that a band of conscientious members of Congress could find common cause across the partisan aisle and nearly win a surprise vote to de-fund the NSA through the defense appropriations process. With members of Congress poised to hear widespread concerns from their constituents during the upcoming August recess, the battle over dragnet spying is far from over. Indeed, for the first time in a decade, America and our Constitution have gained the upper hand on the military-intelligence- industrial complex."


Maybe it's time for the Democrats who voted For this amendment to throw Pelosi and Hoyer out, as step towards taking back the Democratic party from centrist DLC Republican wannabes.

And maybe this is THE issue that progressives and Tea Partiers can agree on to at least shake up the corporatists running the congress and the executive branch.

 

Rob Kall is editor-in-chief, publisher and site architect of OpEdNews.com, President of Futurehealth, Inc, and an inventor. He hosts the Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show, aired in the Metro Philly area on AM 1360, WNJC. Over 200 podcasts are archived for downloading here, or can be accessed from iTunes. Rob is also published regularly on the Huffingtonpost.com

Rob Kall Wikipedia Page

Rob is, with Opednews.com the first media winner of the Pillar Award for supporting Whistleblowers and the first amendment.

See more Rob Kall articles here and, older ones, here. To learn more about Rob and OpEdNews.com, check out A Voice For Truth - ROB KALL | OM Times Magazine and this article. For Rob's work in non-political realms mostly before 2000, see his C.V..  and here's an article on the Storycon Summit Meeting he founded and organized for eight years. Press coverage in the Wall Street Journal: Party's Left Pushes for a Seat at the Table

Here is a one hour radio interview where Rob was a guest- on Envision This, and here is the transcript. 

To watch Rob having a lively conversation with John Conyers, then Chair of the House Judiciary committee, click hereWatch Rob speaking on Bottom up economics at the Occupy G8 Economic Summit, here.

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My articles express my personal opinion, not the opinion of this website.


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The state and the security apparatus will always f... by Paul Repstock on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 10:06:45 AM
is because it would expose them for the frauds the... by Lester Shepherd on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 10:38:19 AM
I expect a little more objectivity here than in th... by June Genis on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 4:00:11 PM
... by Lester Shepherd on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 7:12:51 PM
We should all remember that it was Nancy Pelosi th... by William Cormier on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 10:46:01 AM
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York originally pos... by Peter Duveen on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 2:14:46 PM
What if sometimes to love your country you had to ... by Lance Ciepiela on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 8:44:33 PM
So Americans are entitled to privacy, non-American... by Simon Leigh on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 10:58:08 AM
The 12th CD is entirely contained within 4/5t... by Vietnam Vet on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 11:32:53 AM
NSA efforts to keep us safe DON'T GO FAR ENOUGH. W... by Jim Arnold on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 12:35:31 PM
However, there is a component not developed. That ... by Paul Repstock on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 1:33:01 PM
but yes, you are right, Paul- politically it is a ... by Mark Sashine on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 3:52:10 PM
I don't know you so I don't know if you are joking... by Timothy Gatto on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 8:44:32 PM
Apparently not ridiculous enough.... by Jim Arnold on Friday, Jul 26, 2013 at 8:42:30 PM
II don't understand why Duckworth voted against - ... by yunus Luebben on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 2:50:34 PM
that at least my new congressman Jim McGovern vote... by intotheabyss on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 4:15:41 PM
And it won't be... by BFalcon on Thursday, Jul 25, 2013 at 11:16:30 PM
anyone heard of of our constitutional right to pri... by jimmy page on Saturday, Jul 27, 2013 at 12:27:47 AM