A strong, bipartisan majority to pass S. 2248, allowing the legitimate use of foreign surveillance to protect Americans from being killed by terrorists. Senators of both parties also voted for retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies that took their obligations as corporate citizens seriously, assisting in proper, legal intelligence gathering.
Congratulations to Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) and Senator Kit Bond (R-MO) for their leadership in accomplishing this legislation. May the House follow suit.
UPDATE (6:20 p.m.): Reuters calls it a “largely party-line vote.” What?
Telecom immunity should have never taken this long to approve. The immunity covers companies who received assurances from the Department of Justice that their cooperation broke no laws, and they cooperated to help defend the US from attack. Their reward for trust and assistance should not be billion-dollar class-action lawsuits, which would have been nothing more than a back-door attempt to kneecap intelligence operations that kept this nation safe for more than six years after 9/11.
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