As Patriot Act Fight Continues Americans Reject Expansive Presidential Powers

March 3, 2006

See the faces of surveillance.

The ACLU has just announced the results of a new poll that reveals American voters' attitudes on presidential powers and spying. See how your answers compare to those in the national poll. Take our survey.

Stop the abuse of power. Sign our Demand for the Truth petition here.

Get updates from Capitol Hill and links to related news on our Patriot Act Blog. //

The Senate voted to reauthorize the Patriot Act this week, failing to include common sense reforms to bring that law in line with the Constitution by restoring checks and balances and ensuring the protection of the fundamental freedoms and privacy of all Americans. The House is expected to adopt a bill next week to amend the Patriot Act reauthorization bill conference report it passed last December.

The ACLU applauds the efforts of those Senators who sought to include much-needed reforms in the Patriot Act reauthorization bill and stood firm in their commitment to protect our freedoms.

All this takes places as Americans across the political spectrum express increasing concern about the reckless policies of President Bush and his Administration. A new poll of over 1000 Americans shows that a majority reject the President's illegal program of warrantless domestic surveillance, and doubt that he acted within the bounds of the law.

The American people reject the White House's assertion that the President has the authority to act outside of the law whenever and however he deems necessary. We've posted results and selected questions from the survey online so you can give your own opinions and see how they compare to our nationwide poll of voters across the political spectrum.

Thanks to your efforts, the Patriot Act reauthorization process has been a debate over fundamental freedoms, not the quick rubber-stamp the White House hoped for last spring, and real momentum for reform is still alive in Congress.

The fight to reform the Patriot Act is far from over, as Congress is planning hearings to investigate the massive increase in National Security Letter (NSL) record requests, an issue the ACLU continues to fight, and win on, in the federal courts. But the fact is, until the Bush Administration chooses the rule of law over its pattern of abuses of power, any new reforms may simply go ignored under this President's extreme views of unlimited executive authority.

Your active involvement will help us continue to make a difference in the fight.


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