U.S. House rejects measure to stop NSA phone surveillance program

By on July 25, 2013, 4:30 PM
nsa, privacy, surveillance, phone, house of representatives, prism, amash

The U.S. House rejected an effort to end the National Security Agency’s collection of Americans’ phone records on Wednesday night following an intensive but brief debate concerning the balance between individual’s rights to privacy and government efforts to stop terrorism, according to the Associated Press.

The challenge against the program failed by a narrow margin, with a 217-205 final vote that pitted liberal Democrats and libertarian conservatives against supporters of the Obama administration, Republicans, and national security experts.

This debate and vote in the House is the first instance lawmakers have had to position themselves on the secret surveillance programs revealed last month by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Representative Mike Rogers, R-Mich., chairman of the intelligence committee, entreated his colleagues in the House to back the surveillance program, saying “Have 12 years gone by and our memories faded so badly that we forgot what happened on Sept. 11?”

Demonstrative of the unusual split in opinions, the chief sponsor of the repeal effort is Representative Justin Amash, also a Republican from Michigan. Amash told the House that his goal is to top the government’s indiscriminate collection of phone data, defend the constitution, and “defend the privacy of every American.”

The overall defense spending bill allocating $598.3 billion for defense spending passed without Amash’s measure, with a vote of 315-109.




User Comments: 13

Got something to say? Post a comment
cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The U.S. House rejected an effort to end the National Security Agency's collection of Americans' phone records on Wednesday night following an intensive but brief debate concerning the balance between individual's rights to privacy and government efforts to stop terrorism, according to the Associated Press.
They are so naive thinking the can stop every attack, when they spend their time enticing the next round. Similar to a group of kids throwing rocks at everyone to protect themselves. The rock throwing will only work so long, and someone will get tired of the inconvenience of flying rocks. It doesn't take high intelligence, to know that what they are doing is attracting trouble.

1 person liked this | spencer spencer said:

Controlled politician SCUM....your NWO will fail.

1 person liked this | captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

Well, like it or not, you'll have to get over your outrage and get used to the idea of PRISM.

Did any of you really think the US Government was going to let Edward Snowden dictate its policies?

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

What's good for our country!

tekman42 said:

Well, like it or not, you'll have to get over your outrage and get used to the idea of PRISM.

Did any of you really think the US Government was going to let Edward Snowden dictate its policies?

Eggzactly! Not in this Century...or the next.

jackal2687 said:

I think that ultimately this is a good sign of progress. I hope to see this program dismantled and terminated long before I willingly give up my rights that I fought for to begin with.

Guest said:

THanks to huge lobbying. Money always rules. Rep = Dem --> always. No illusion here.

Guest said:

I wish they had voted to overturn the blanket phone surveillance program and went to a more targeted program. When you treat everyone as a potential criminal/terrorist you have already lost. The good news is at least this time it was done in the light of day and not in some secret dark corner. We now can have discussions and we the people can vote with more knowledge about these issues.

1 person liked this | MilwaukeeMike said:

Demonstrative of the unusual split in opinions, the chief sponsor of the repeal effort is Representative Justin Amash, also a Republican from Michigan.

We assume every split is supposed to be along party lines, but in this case it's people who have access to classified information against people who don't. When the ones with access to the information are in favor of it and the ones without access are against doesn't that at least make you wonder if more would be in favor if they had access to the information?

This vote was a good thing even though it was struck down. Now the country has a list of everyone who is for and against this program. Now when election time comes around we can vote accordingly.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

I'm not american, just a regular dude from Chile and I have a question....

correct me if I'm wrong but......aren't you americans the guys who have a constitution that allows you to be ARMED TO THE TEETH in your houses in case the government ever tries to **** with the people and take too much power in their hands or something like that?

if yes....THEN WHAT ARE YOU FREAKIN WAITING FOR???????

wiyosaya said:

I'm not american, just a regular dude from Chile and I have a question....

correct me if I'm wrong but......aren't you americans the guys who have a constitution that allows you to be ARMED TO THE TEETH in your houses in case the government ever tries to **** with the people and take too much power in their hands or something like that?

if yes....THEN WHAT ARE YOU FREAKIN WAITING FOR???????

It may seem like that is the obvious thing to do, however, most "enforcement agencies" in the US have paramilitary teams that are far more armed and dangerous than probably almost all US citizens. IMHO, any such attempt at armed overthrow of the government would likely fail due to this fact. By enforcement agencies, I mean police, immigration, EPA, FBI - you name one, they probably have a paramilitary team, I. e., a S.W.A.T. team that is armed to the teeth with items previously only available to the US military.

There are people in the US that are getting very concerned that this has gone too far. Take, for instance, the Tibetan Monks who accidentally overstayed their US visas and were promptly raided by one of these paramilitary teams in full gear, or a 92-year old female who was "accidentally" killed by another such team.

MilwaukeeMike said:

I'm not american, just a regular dude from Chile and I have a question....

correct me if I'm wrong but......aren't you americans the guys who have a constitution that allows you to be ARMED TO THE TEETH in your houses in case the government ever tries to **** with the people and take too much power in their hands or something like that?

if yes....THEN WHAT ARE YOU FREAKIN WAITING FOR???????

In other countries the people who revolt against the govt are the ones who have nothing to lose... the poor and desperate. In America, the poor gets all they have FROM the govt. Every few years a new politician comes along who promises more and more free stuff to the citizens. Who exactly is going to revolt?

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Good point! A concept of which I had never considered.

In other countries the people who revolt against the govt are the ones who have nothing to lose... the poor and desperate. In America, the poor gets all they have FROM the govt. Every few years a new politician comes along who promises more and more free stuff to the citizens. Who exactly is going to revolt?
What is sickening is those who do nothing are cared for more than those who do work. I have actually heard people make the statement, "Why would I want to work?".

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.