Stop me if you’ve heard this before: some of the worst clauses of the Patriot Act will sunset unless Congress renews them by the end of month.  The Administration is working with its allies in Congress to extend the National Security Letters , “sneak-and-peak”, and warrantless wiretapping.  

With so many new members of Congress, you’d think they might want to take some time to discuss the issue, or at least go through the committee process, but no: the House is voting tonight on HR 514, which extends the PATRIOT act until December.  

If you already know why this is such a bad idea, you can take action via POPVOX, ACLU, EFF, Downsize DC, or Demand Progress.  

HR 514 is coming directly to the floor, under an “exception” process, it needs a 2/3 majority.  The Republicans always voted on a straight party line, and plenty of Blue Dogs go along, so it seems like a slam dunk.  But maybe not: Lisa Mascaro reports in the LA Times that Tea Party representatives in the House aren’t happy with some of the provisions either.

After this vote, the action will shift to the Senate.  Expect some more action alerts.  For now, though, the focus is on the House.

You can find out more at ACLU, EFF, Downsize DC, Demand Progress, and Washington Watch.

Get FISA Right is running a campaign too, using POPVOX — you can find out more at There’s an app for that.  

So one way or another, please, take action!And if you’re still not sure why, here’s a video by Chip Pitts of BORDC:

JonPincus

JonPincus

My professional bio's at http://www.cfp2008.org/wiki/index.php/Jon_Pincus