The House must extend provisions of the Patriot Act because terrorists still are trying to kill Americans in the name of religion, Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, tells Newsmax.TV. New House members will get on board and support the move, the former judge predicted.
Extending the controversial provisions involving surveillance, set to expire on Feb. 28, fell seven votes short of passage when 26 Republicans bucked the leadership and joined with Democrats to defeat the effort. The provisions, which President Barack Obama supports, include authorizing the FBI to use roving wiretaps, giving the government the power to examine such things as library records, and authorize the surveillance of those not connected to terrorist group.
Poe, who is on the House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, maintained during an interview at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington that the Patriot Act “protects not only national security but individual liberty and its extension to the end of the year is something that’s important. I think that when that education process is finished with the new House members there won’t be a problem in passing the Patriot Act.”
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The measure is necessary because “we are still fighting international terrorists who in the name of religion want to kill Americans anywhere they can find Americans,” Poe said.
“They haven’t stopped their war against the United States so we have to continue to be vigilant and make sure when we find these people we capture them, we arrest them and we take to Guantanamo Bay prison.”
Poe said that Obama needs to make it clear to the world that the United States will protect Americans wherever they are. The war on terror also is linked closely to border security, and as many as 10,000 National Guard troops are needed to secure the Southern border, he said.
“What we need to do is first let Washington understand that there are portions of the Texas Mexico border that are under the operational control of the drug cartel,” he said.
On other topics, Poe said:
- Proposals to cut $74 billion from the budget are not enough, and every program should be reviewed, including foreign aid. “We give money to most of the countries on earth, and it’s time we stopped doing that, we should give money only to countries in our national interest.”
- Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan should recuse herself from ruling on Obamacare should the measure come before the court because she was Obama’s solicitor general when the administration was formulating the law. “She should recuse herself, that’s the right thing to do, but she will not do so,” he said.
- Congress should be careful when the budget knife gets to the military and it must be sure to spend enough to protect the country.
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