FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
May 14, 2020
Contact: Press@paul.senate.gov, 202-224-4343
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a speech on the U.S. Senate floor this morning, U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) spoke out in defense of Americans’ constitutional rights and condemned warrantless government surveillance as the Senate prepared to vote on H.R. 6172, the USA FREEDOM Reauthorization Act of 2020, which would reauthorize certain expired Patriot Act powers.
“To those of us that prize the rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, the Patriot Act is a violation of our most precious rights. The Patriot Act, in the end, is not patriotic. The Patriot Act makes an unholy and unconstitutional exchange of liberty for a false sense of security. And I, for one, will oppose its reauthorization,” said Dr. Paul.
“I believe there’s no fixing the FISA court to make it constitutional for Americans. I believe the only solution is to exempt Americans from the FISA court,” he also stated in his speech, later adding, “Our Founding Fathers understood that justice cannot be achieved in secret courts that don’t notify the accused nor let the accused have legal representation.”
You can watch Dr. Paul’s speech HERE.
At the end of his speech, Dr. Paul offered his amendment to H.R. 6172 to protect every American’s privacy, ensure due process, reassert the Fourth Amendment, and help guard the integrity of our elections.
Dr. Paul’s amendment would have still allowed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) to order surveillance of non-Americans and our enemies, but it would have required the government to obtain a warrant from a traditional federal court to surveil an American.
The amendment would have also prohibited the federal government from introducing into evidence any information gained from warrantless surveillance on an American, while guaranteeing an American’s ability to use such evidence in their defense.
You can read his amendment HERE.