Yesterday, the House of Representatives failed to extend provisions of the PATRIOT Act. Glenn gave his reaction on radio this morning.
“House Republicans they say now suffered an embarrassing setback when they fell seven votes short of extending provisions of the PATRIOT Act. This is a vote that served as the first small uprising of the Tea Party Block,” Glenn read.
“The Bill to reauthorize key parts of the counterterrorism surveillance law which expires at the end of the month required a supermajority to pass under special rules served for noncontroversial measures but it fell short of the required 2/3 after 26 Republicans bucked the leadership, eight of them freshmen elected in November. Most Democrats opposed the extension. The final tally was 277 in favor of the extension, 148 oppose,” he continued.
So what did Glenn think of Tea Party Congressmen blocking the extension?
“Is this a setback, or is this a move forward? These are the kinds of questions, these are the kinds of tough decisions that we are now going to have to make,” Glenn said.
Glenn believes that it’s easier to make decisions on this kind of legislation when terrorists are launching attacks and everyone is united behind the same things, but nearly ten years removed from 9/11 this is not necessarily the case.
“It's much easier when you say, ‘Hey, Islamic terrorism is here and we're all screwed,’ and we all believe in the same basic thing. We all believe in the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” Glenn said.
“But we can't all say that now, can we?”
Glenn said that we are at the point where we can’t trust the federal government to not turn the PATRIOT Act against its own people.
“Now we're looking at foreign and domestic enemies of the Constitution. That is the problem.”
“Our job has just gotten harder because now we cannot trust the government to do what they are charged with doing and that is keeping us safe. We can no longer trust that we can exchange a little bit of freedom for a little more security because we will lose both and we will deserve neither.”