Tags: spy | bill | passed

House Passes Spy Bill, Allows Telco Lawsuits

Friday, 14 Mar 2008 01:29 PM

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

WASHINGTON -- The Democratic-led U.S. House of Representatives defied President George W. Bush on Friday and passed an anti-terrorism spy bill that permits lawsuits against phone companies.

But the 213-197 vote was far short of the two-thirds majority needed to override a promised veto by Bush. He has demanded that any telecommunication company that participated in his warrantless domestic spying program secretly begun after the September 11 attacks receive retroactive immunity.

The battle over whether to shield companies has been a key reason why the House and Senate have been unable to agree on a bill to replace a law that expired last month that expanded U.S. authority to track enemy targets without a court order.

It has also prompted Republicans to accuse Democrats of undermining national security while Democrats have accused Bush and his fellow Republicans of election-year fear mongering.

"It is time to reject the scare tactics of the Bush administration and enact this carefully crafted legislation," said Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat.

But Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas, top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, warned that without immunity telecommunication companies may stop helping defend the United States.

"Ninety-eight percent of America's communications technology is owned by private sector companies," Smith said. "We cannot conduct foreign surveillance without them."

About 40 lawsuits have accused AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc and Sprint Nextel Corp of violating the privacy rights of law-abiding Americans swept up in the electronic surveillance of phone calls and e-mails. Damages could total in the billions of dollars.

© Reuters 2007. All rights reserved.

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Atlanta US Attorney Yates Tapped for Deputy AG

Sunday, 21 Dec 2014 17:46 PM

President Barack Obama is preparing to nominate the top federal prosecutor in Atlanta to the No. 2 position at the Justi . . .

Pataki: Obama to Blame for US Troubles Abroad

Sunday, 21 Dec 2014 16:54 PM

President Barack Obama's "lead-from-behind" strategy is to blame for most of America's problems abroad, former New York  . . .

Variety's Wallenstein: How Obama Took Sony's Crisis From Bad to Worse

Sunday, 21 Dec 2014 15:53 PM

If there are such things as textbooks in the field of crisis management, the Sony Pictures hack might end up in the chap . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved