Rand Paul: Don’t Trust a Lying Government

By Sen. Rand Paul. This week President Barack Obama suffered a serious rebuke. Congress sent the president a bill that he signed that tells him his illegal bulk collection of phone records must end.

Apologists for collecting all the phone records of all Americans all of the time now belatedly say they are OK with ending the bulk collection program. They want you to know that your records are not really protected by the Fourth Amendment. They are only doing you a favor by granting you this reform.

Former Director of the National Security Agency and Central Intelligence Agency Michael Hayden writes in TIME that the law is clear. According to Hayden, your records—once held by the phone company—have no Fourth Amendment protection. Hayden writes: “The controlling legal authority here is a Supreme Court case decided in 1979, Smith v. Maryland, where the court held that metadata is not, repeat not, constitutionally protected” . . .

In 1979, the Supreme Court ruled 5-3 in Smith v. Maryland that a few days worth of phone records for a single individual were not protected by the Fourth Amendment. The NSA today, though, collects hundreds of millions of phone records from hundreds of millions of Americans without an individualized warrant. I hardly think Smith v. Maryland contemplated this vast dragnet.

The justices who dissented in Smith v. Maryland, though, were amazingly prescient and on target. Justice Thurgood Marshall—who disagreed with the opinion of the court—wrote that he didn’t share the assumption that customers would “typically know” that a phone company tracked calls internally—and that even if they did, there’s no way individuals would expect the general public or government to be privy to such records. (Read more from “Rand Paul: Don’t Trust a Lying Government” HERE)

Rand Paul Faces Growing Criticism for Taking Credit for Passage of a Bill he Opposed

By ALEX ROGERS AND DUSTIN VOLZ. Sen. Rand Paul is taking credit for advancing a bill he opposes.

A day after forcing a temporary shutdown of the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of America’s metadata, the Kentucky Republican said Monday night that his actions actually boosted the surveillance-reform bill known as the USA Freedom Act, which will likely pass the Senate in the coming days despite his repeated—and vociferous—objections that it doesn’t go far enough protecting the privacy rights of Americans.

Noting that the Senate failed to get the requisite 60 votes before Memorial Day recess and subsequently voted overwhelming Sunday to move the bill forward, Paul told reporters as he left the Capitol that his blockade of the bill helped Freedom Act advocates.

“The government will no longer be collecting in bulk all Americans’ records under a generalized warrant,” he said. “So I think that’s a big step forward.”

“I like to look at the bright side of things,” Paul added. “Before I got involved there were 57 votes. Even though I object to the final vote, there’s now 77 votes for ending bulk collection. So you could say that I—in an unusual way—persuaded 20 people to switch their vote and to vote to end bulk collection. It’s kind of a different way of persuading people, but it seemed to work.” (Read more from this story HERE)

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