Tags: Harry Reid | NSA/Surveillance | harry reid | mitch mcconnell | patriot act | freedom act

Harry Reid: McConnell 'Manufactured' the Senate's NSA Crisis

Image: Harry Reid: McConnell 'Manufactured' the Senate's NSA Crisis
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, left, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. (Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 01 Jun 2015 09:56 AM

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has created a "manufactured crisis" over the expiring provisions of the Patriot Act, said Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, The Hill reports.

Reid blamed McConnell, not Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, for the expiration of the Patriot Act Sunday night even though Paul delayed the vote causing the law to lapse.

"It is clear that the majority leader simply didn't have a plan," Reid said in comments on the Senate floor Sunday, according to The Hill.

"I disagree with the junior senator from Kentucky, but we're not in the mess today because of the junior senator from Kentucky," Reid said, referring to Paul. "We are in the mess we are in today because of the majority leader."

McConnell wanted to pass a "clean" extension of the Patriot Act provisions. Now with the Patriot Act having lapsed, Senate Republicans look set to back the House's USA Freedom Act, which would require the NSA to request phone records from private companies, even though they voted the House bill down last week.

McConnell signaled his support for it Sunday night, a reversal from his earlier opposition to it.

"It's not ideal but, along with votes on some modest amendments that attempt to ensure the program can actually work as promised, it's now the only realistic way forward," McConnell said, according to the Associated Press.

The Senate then voted 77-17 to move ahead on the USA Freedom Act.

The prospect is something Reid, and the White House, support.

"There is a way out: Pass the USA Freedom Act, which the House overwhelmingly passed with 338 votes on a totally bipartisan basis," Reid said, according to The Hill. "All we need is a few more Republican senators to vote with Democrats and the bill will pass."

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has created a "manufactured crisis" over the expiring provisions of the Patriot Act, said Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, The Hill reports.
harry reid, mitch mcconnell, patriot act, freedom act
297
2015-56-01
Monday, 01 Jun 2015 09:56 AM
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