Rep. Steve King discusses the future of The Patriot Act

Rep. Steve King joined Glenn on radio this morning to discuss The Patriot Act, it’s future, and current amendments trying to be pushed through Congress.

Watch a highlight below and scroll down for a rough transcript:

GLENN: We have Steve King on. And I know he's proud to be following this conversation, about how Mariah Carey looks like me in a dress. Steve, how are you?

STEVE: Well, I'm doing fine, Glenn, and thank you for having me on. I'm just having trouble imagining you in a dress.

GLENN: Yes. Well, thank you very much. You never know. We now have Bruce Jenner in a dress on the cover of Vanity Fair. So why doesn't everybody get into a dress?

STEVE: I'll have some answers for that, but maybe I should reserve that. Bruce Jenner -- Graceland College, Lamoni, Iowa is where he had his athletic career.

GLENN: Yeah. I would leave it at that here, Steve.

STEVE: Thanks for the good counsel.

GLENN: Yes. Thank you. Thank you. So, Congressman, we want to talk to you because I think we disagree on something. And you're one of the really good guys in Congress. You're a guy I really trust. I think you've been there for a long time and you haven't folded and become a dirtbag. And I respect your point of view. But you're for the USA Freedom Act, except you're actually for it being a little stronger and giving the government even more control. And you're going to have to convince me of this because I despise the Patriot Act. I want them to have a warrant if they have a problem with somebody. And not a general warrant of, everybody who has eyes and a nose and at least one ear.

STEVE: Well, Glenn, yeah, I think we would be on a different place on the Patriot Act. And I have -- I have sat in through a lot of classified briefings and go into the secure room and read what's in there. That gives me an exclusive piece of information that I can't talk with -- you know, that's different from yours or anybody else's. It's just that as I see this -- and I went back and reviewed a case, Smith v. Maryland, 1979, that said there's not an expectation of privacy when it comes to public domain and phone bills. And that's the foundation of this metadata collection. I'm at this place where I want to protect people's privacy. And I'm okay with ending the metadata protection. That's outside the bounds of what we thought and intended when this Patriot Act was passed. But I'm suggesting instead of us having no metadata access because we have a cyber war to fight against. There's no reason to suspend the Constitution. But we have a cyber war to fight against the rallied Islam. Islamic jihad. I offered an amendment that would allow our NSA to reach an agreement, to negotiate with telecommunication companies to hold the data for them so they actually do have access to it, rather than beings subject to whether those companies -- the private companies decide to keep it or not. And that way, the information will be within the hands of the private sector, which doesn't seem to give people a lot of heartburn. And yet, still, it would be accessible under a FISA warrant, which there are only some 20 people, 30 people that have access to that.

GLENN: So here's where I want to see if we can reach agreement here, Steve. I don't have a problem -- if companies collect my information, I expect that. And I don't like -- if I don't like it, I can go to another company. If a company chooses to do that -- there's two parts of this. I don't want our federal government collecting all this data. There's no good from them having access to every phone call and everything that you've ever done, even if they don't listen. Even if they don't read. At some point, when the average person, they now say, is committing three felonies unknown to them every single day, all it requires is somebody who has ill will for one group or another and they can prove you doing anything because they have all the data. What I really want is, A, the government not holding all this data themselves, and, B, an actual constitutional warrant.

If everybody is for -- if you have a bad guy, you know, if they would have gone with the Tsarnaev brothers, and the government would have come and said, hey, we need to get their phone records because, you know, they've been out of the country. They're going over to Chechnya and everything else. Everybody would have said, yeah, go ahead. That makes sense. But just to gather everybody's is wrong, and to have a blanket warrant is wrong

STEVE: Well, then -- a blanket warrant, I think that's -- I think that's a different kind of an issue than what we actually have here, as far as the blanket warrant is concerned. Unless you consider that the telephone metadata is actually being something that is being processed to try to identify what they're doing. I've suggested this that, if we're not -- either one of us are very concerned about the private sector companies, the telecommunications companies holding that data, they need it for billing. And if they didn't have the data, someone would sue them for billing them unjustly and they wouldn't be able to defend themselves. So the data will be there for a period of time. I can ask the intelligence community how long they need to have access to that data, and they were talking in terms of five years, about three or four years ago. And that's what they'll say essentially under oath. But if you get it back to private, then maybe 18 months. And I look at this -- we chased Osama bin Laden around for nine and a half years before we finally got him. And he was still plotting attacks against the United States according to recent reports coming out of the data that they released from the compound. So I don't know how long we need access. I think the intelligence community has certainly a better measure than I do. If it's five years and not a year and a half, if we had a provision in the USA Freedom Act that ends all government metadata collection, I should say, but allows them to reach a contract with Verizon, for example. Verizon, will you hold that data for a longer period of time? We'll pay you to store it. And it's available under a constitutional warrant, under a foreign intelligence surveillance court, that should satisfy the constitutional concerns of people and their privacy concerns. Do you see a flaw in that approach?

GLENN: I honestly -- Congressman, I just don't trust -- you know, we were talking about it yesterday. And I asked, does anybody here believe that the United States government stopped this program yesterday? Nobody. Nobody believes that.

We talked to Rand Paul and he was explaining -- I think it was under executive order like 1332 or something. He said they've got another, through executive order, that you guys don't even know the full details on. That they're collecting this metadata under. The problem is, I don't think we're having honest conversations. Because I think -- I don't believe there's anybody in the United States that wants to have another terrorist attack, except for terrorists. There's -- everybody wants to do common sense things, but we want to do them right and do them constitutionally. But I don't think that we're having a real conversation on those things. You know, just this whole Freedom Act seems to be pushed through really rather secretively, it seems, by the Republicans. And I don't understand it. Why can't we have an adult conversation?

STEVE: Glenn, we should have an adult conversation. I think you put your finger on it. I reviewed today the op-ed that I wrote a year ago. I believe it's dated May 14th of 2014. Maybe May 20th. Somewhere close to there. In that op-ed, I wrote and complained that it was secretive, and it was hushed, and it was rushed through. Then it sat dormant for a year, and they bring it back and do essentially the same thing. So when I offer my amendment, which I think it should get -- and it got support from people like Louie Gohmert and others who are very concerned about privacy, but also concerned about national security. When I offered that amendment, it was no deal because we've already negotiated this. We've negotiated with the Democrats. And John Conyers and Jerry Nadler and others have cosponsored the legislation signed onto the bill. Therefore, we can't let it be changed by any amendment, no matter how good it is. That's also true on the Senate side, if you look at the cosponsors over there. You have people that are as disparate -- for example, Leahy and Mike Lee, whom I have great respect for. They came together on this conclusion on how to approach the metadata collection. Trust the telecoms to hold the data and then leave the question open as to -- well, essentially it's been addressed a little bit now -- but leave it open as to whether the government can negotiate for that data to be held longer or not. I think the case is closed on that because they voted my amendment down twice. So I don't think telecommunication companies will believe that Congress has somehow implied that they should be able to negotiate holding that data longer, if they voted my amendment down.

So that's where this is at. I want our nation to be safe. I want us to be constitutionally principled. I want to live with that. And yet, in today's world, we have a president who just is not bound by his own oath. And the Constitution no longer means in the eyes of the public what it was understood to mean at the time of ratification. And that has been eroded dramatically over the last six years, and that is a big problem.

GLENN: Well, see, this is where -- I would like to have the conversation with you, is we said to -- to Rand Paul yesterday, it's not just this president. It's any president. No president should be able to have this kind of access to this kind of information. I don't want this in the hands of any government. So when you ask, you know, would you be comfortable with what you just proposed? If it really is -- and this is the key part -- if it really is private companies hold information and then if there is a suspect, you go and get a warrant for that specific information and the company gives you that information, if that's -- that's what we've always done. You know -- that's the way it's supposed to work. So, yeah, I don't have a problem with that. I just don't think that that's going to happen.

STEVE: Well, I'm listening here. And I'm thinking, Glenn. How would I think about this. This might be a good exercise for a lot of your listeners too. How would I think about this data if it were a gun that I was buying? Would I want the federal government to have a record of every gun, when the transaction was, so they knew where it was so they could go and find it? No, I don't want that. So I don't want -- neither do I want them to have it in their hands that data that would allow them to go in and do a complete examination of my activities. The same fashion I wouldn't want them to know if I had guns or where they would be for that matter. That does help I think clarify what we have here. Yet, I'm not worried that my gun dealer has those records in his hands. And I'm not worried if there's a crime if they come in and serve a warrant on my gun dealer and say, you can't buy a gun here. That's maybe the way to frame this so that people can understand it and so that we can come to a conclusion and an agreement.

GLENN: Do you believe the USA Freedom Act will do that?

STEVE: I think that it will do that because it ends government date collection. I think it leaves vulnerable because it doesn't have a provision that encourages the telecommunication companies to hold that data. So I think we're less safe. That's my bottom line. We're less safe, Glenn.

GLENN: Okay. So let me ask you -- do you believe that the government will actually stop? I mean, how do you build a 2 billion-dollar data collection place just outside of Salt Lake City and then shut it down? Do you believe they'll actually shut those things down?

STEVE: I think he's more likely to shut down Gitmo than he is that date collection place outside of Salt Lake.

GLENN: Yeah, it's not going to happen.

STEVE: No. And we're a year and a half of this president -- and I think for any president, that's a legitimate and a valid comment and concern. This one though has done more damage to our understanding of constitutional principles than any president we've ever had. And I'm looking for a president that will restore the soul of America, and that means repair and refurbish the pillars of American exceptionalism. And our Founding Fathers expected that when our president gave his oath of office, that he would abide by it. And that's the big flaw we have going on right now too.

GLENN: Can you give me the names of three people that you think are running that you think could do it? Three or one?

STEVE: You know, it's a little bit early in my process to answer that since I am from Iowa, anything I say affects the race a little bit.

GLENN: Yeah, okay. I'll let you slide.

STEVE: Five or six or seven of them, I'd put their names in a hat, draw one out, and gleefully say Mr. President. Then I draw the Vice President. The rest could be in the cabinet, Glenn. There's some good people out there.

GLENN: Wow. Yeah, there are. There are. I think this is the best selection of people that we've ever had, at least in my lifetime, I think. We've had some good candidates before, but there's a lot of good candidates. Thank you very much, Congressman. I really appreciate it.

Glenn Beck can't help but wonder, "What is wrong with us?" in light of the Left's latest move — canceling six Dr. Seuss books due to "hurtful and wrong" illustrations — that takes America one step closer to complete insanity. And now, school districts are jumping on board after President Joe Biden seems to have dropped Dr. Seuss from the White House's annual "Read Across America Day" proclamation.

On the radio program Tuesday, Glenn argued that deleting books is the perfect example of fascism, and asked when we as a country will finally realize it.

"They are banning Dr. Seuss books. How much more do you need to see before all of America wakes up? ... This is fascism!" Glenn said. "We don't destroy books. What is wrong with us, America?"

Watch the video below to hear more from Glenn:


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Former Democratic presidential candidate and Hawaii representative Tulsi Gabbard and Glenn Beck don't agree much on policy, but they're in lockstep on principles.

On "The Glenn Beck Podcast" this week, Tulsi spoke with Glenn about one of her last acts in Congress, introducing the "Protect Women's Sports Act," which she says would "strengthen, clarify, and uphold the intent of Title IX to provide a level playing field for girls and women in sports." But since then, the Biden administration has gone in the opposite direction, and has supported allowing biological men to compete in women's sports.

Watch the video clip below to hear why Tulsi took a stand for female athletes:


Watch the full interview with Tulsi Gabbard here.

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Later this week, former President Trump will attend CPAC and give his first major policy appearance since leaving office. Sources close to the President reveal he will focus on "the future of the Republican Party and the conservative movement."

The future of the GOP is a question that demands real discussion before elections in 2022 and 2024. Right now, I can see three possible answers for how you act:

  1. Those in power and senior positions will ignore the reasons behind Donald Trump winning in 2016. They will be vindicated in their minds because they outlasted him, as they view DC as a job for life. These leaders will go back to business as usual and seek forgiveness from the left, hoping for unity and acceptance in the future.
  2. The second outcome is another section of the party that is understandably very angry over the left's Presidents treatment. They still support and believe in Trump. They think it's time to take off the gloves and treat Biden/the left exactly how they treated Trump.
  3. The few policy positions offered in public will be centered solely around opposing the left. They will also make the case how the left suck, are dangerous, and how you need them in power. The next four years are merely a countdown for Trump to run again and right the wrong of 2020.
  4. The third outcome is very similar to the second, but with one key difference. While they appreciate everything Trump accomplished while in office, they feel it's time to unite behind another candidate.
Question

Which of these three positions will work best for the American people? Which helps built a political base for elections in both 2022 and 2024?

If you seek to help save America, it is critical to do some soul searching. Whether you love or hate him, Donald Trump got 75 million votes and made advancements in key demographics. What did he do well that you can develop further? In what areas was he poor, and how can you improve?

I want to raise six principled points everyone on the right should be forced to consider in the run-up to 2024.

1 - Understanding American Exceptionalism

FACT: America is an exceptional nation. If you read enough of world history, you will find ample evidence that America acted in ways that made it unique and significantly different from other countries in the past and modern times. These reasons must be understood and promoted through the culture and body politic.

One of those reasons is the layout of your Declaration of Independence. If you look around politics today, you will see people on all political sides telling you what they hate, why the other side is the enemy, and how they must be defeated.

In the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson also made that case against the English when he listed 27 grievances against the King. So how is the layout key? It took Jefferson 357 words to get to those grievances. Your Declaration is your mission statement: it tells everyone in the world what America aspires to be. It states the belief that all were created equal, all had certain rights that come directly from God, and that it is the government's job to protect rights -- not give people rights.

The left is successfully painting everyone on the right to be a terrorist who enjoyed the Capitol Hill riots. If you ever want to win another election, it will be critical to explain what you stand for to the American people.

After all, ask yourself which makes you the most passionate to vote - removing someone from office or voting for a vision and change you believe in?

2 - The Constitution

Is there a better place to start this vision than the Constitution? Yes, it is mostly ignored today by those in power and is only referenced by politicians and media when it fits a narrative.

The Constitution is a beautiful and complex document but is primarily based on a straightforward principle. The government should be extremely limited in its power, but it should be as close to the people as possible where there is a clear need for government. Who can argue with this principle?

Who wants someone they have never met, dictating how they live their life?

This is why the Constitution grants the President no real power, and gives Congress 18 clauses of power, listed under Article 1, Section 8. Any and every power not mentioned there belongs at the state level.

3 - Finances

The power structure in DC has changed many times over the last twenty years, with both parties having the opportunity to rule the different federal branches. There have been two periods where one party controlled all the power in DC:

  • 2008-2010: Obama / Dem
  • 2016-2018: Trump / GOP

Despite these changes, your government continually grows, you continue to spend money you don't have, and in ten out of the last thirteen years, you have added over $1,000,000,000,000 to your national debt, which now sits just under $28 trillion. Does this seem sustainable to you? Of course not, but sadly your finances only get worse.

America has revenue of over $3.2 trillion every year, yet DC has not passed a budget since 2008. Can you imagine any business running that way? Do you think Apple, Amazon, or Disney have a budget? It is time to get America on a path to financial sustainability, work towards a balanced budget, and explain to the American people how you will achieve it.

4 - Taxes

Do you remember discussing taxes during the Tea Party?

We used to make the simple moral case to the American people: any money you earn is yours, you should use it to plan your life, and the government has no right to take it from you. This was so successful around 2012 that Herman Cain ran for President with one primary policy: the 9-9-9 plan.

If America is to return to prosperity after Covid, lower taxes and a simpler tax code must be a central theme.

5 - Cutting Government

Look at the size of the US government in 2021. Are you happy? Can you name the numerous departments? Is it now the freedom-loving Americans' position that agencies like Education, Energy, EPA, and Commerce are constitutional bodies of government and are well-run?

How about the IRS, which targeted Tea-Party groups under President Obama? Do they deserve support, or is it time to start sharing a vision of the departments that should be abolished?

This principle used to be a big part of the Conservative platform. It played a massive role in 2012 when Rick Perry ran for President. His campaign was destroyed in 45 short seconds when he could not remember the three agencies he would abolish.

Maybe it's time to refresh this debate but change the parameters. How about we discuss the agencies that should be kept?

6 - Bill of Rights

Today, the Bill of Rights is under constant attack. The far-left/woke mob hates free speech, and they seek to cancel anyone with an opposing view. However, the attacks on the Bill of Rights don't always come from the left.

America has a second amendment that guarantees you the right to bear arms. The last time the GOP held both houses of Congress and the Presidency, they banned bump stocks - but who really NEEDS a bump stock?

As the years have passed, some have admitted they are open to red flag laws. Is this still the case?

While the second amendment may be under attack, it is clear the fourth amendment is dead. Regardless of which party holds power in DC, the NSA is given continuous ability to spy on Americans. The simple, principled case from Rand Paul of "get a warrant" always falls on deaf ears.

The Bill of Rights should be a unifying document for most Americans, as the principles are self-evident and a significant part of any freedom platform going forward.

Conclusion

America will face significant challenges over the coming years. As the government continues to grow, the far left get more hostile, and central planners seek a great reset. If you share my concern, then now is the time to forget our tribes and ignore the debate on who should be President in 2024.

It's time to work hard to build a platform by raising a banner of bold colors, not pale pastels. We must share a clear vision to the American people of a bright future where they are free, prosperous, and can pursue their happiness.

When the platform is built and successful, people can identify the best candidate to run in 2024.

"First, you win the argument, and then you win the election." — Margaret Thatcher

Jonathon Dunne is a keynote speaker, weekly podcast host on Blaze Media, and published author on major platforms such as The Blaze, Glenn Beck, Libertarian Republic, Western Journalism, and Constitution. Since 2012, he has reached millions with his message of American exceptionalism.

You can find him on social media – Facebook, Twitter, MeWe

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is under fire for questioning President Joe Biden's nominee for an assistant health secretary position, Dr. Rachel Levine, about her alleged support for giving children puberty blockers and sex-change surgeries.

During a confirmation hearing Thursday, Paul pointedly asked Levine, who is a transgender woman, about her support for allowing children to change their sex, and whether she believes children are capable of making such life-altering decisions.

Levine evaded the question, answering instead with a vague statement about the complexities of transgender medicine, which she would again reiterate for Paul's subsequent questions.

Watch a video clip of the confirmation hearing here.

Predictably, Paul has been labeled "transphobic" and accused of trying to derail Levine with "transphobic misinformation" by the leftist media.

On the Glenn Beck Radio Program Friday, Paul said his questioning Levine had nothing to do with who she is or the fact that she is a transgender adult, but was about the question of gender changes for children.

"The interesting thing is, none of it was directed towards her personally or who she is. It was directed towards the question of whether children can consent. And this is an intellectual question. It's not an inflammatory question. It's a question of serious consequences," he explained. "Most people would argue that children can't really make an informed consent. You know, we have laws against a man having sex with a 12-year-old, even if the 12-year-old says 'yes', because we don't think a 12-year-old is capable of consenting. They just aren't old enough to make the decision."

Paul went on to add, "I guess the danger is, you have to have some chutzpah. You have to have some guts, some courage to stand up because it is a culture out there where ... everybody is saying I made transphobic comments yesterday. All I did was ask whether a minor could consent to this kind of dramatic surgery. Nothing I ever said was hateful. I said nothing hateful about these people. I said nothing hateful about adults who choose to do this. But the culture is out there is so strong that so many in office are afraid to speak out. And it's getting worse.

"There's a handful of us that will speak out in the Senate. There's a handful in the House, and we just have to grow our ranks. But we have to resist or it just will roll over us. And we'll live in this terrible cancel culture world where nobody speaks out, and everybody is afraid to say anything."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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