from Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-11)
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-11) issued the following statement in support of the reauthorization of the three national security provisions in the PATRIOT Act which are set to expire on Thursday, May 26th. These provisions will be extended for an additional four years.
"As a military officer, I have seen the PATRIOT Act provide invaluable legal tools to detect, disrupt, and prevent potential terrorist plots. These legal tools have been available to investigators of organized crime and drug traffickers for years; surely they should be available for use against terrorists. We must have the authority to defend our nation from future attacks, while ensuring American's fundamental rights are protected under the Fourth Amendment.
"The PATRIOT Act has played an important role in disrupting potential attacks and keeping our country safe since 9/11. Three essential national security provisions of the PATRIOT Act are set to expire tonight; therefore Congress must act to ensure these constitutional and commonsense safeguards remain intact against potential terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.
"While the death of Osama bin Laden, the terrorist mastermind behind 9/11, is great news, it represents one victory in our continuing fight against terror. This fight is not over and we must maintain aggressive efforts to protect and defend our nation against any potential terrorist enemies."
Background on the Expiring National Security Provisions in the PATRIOT Act
Courtesy of the House Judiciary Committee
- § Roving Wiretaps: Roving wiretaps allow intelligence officials - after receiving approval from a federal court - to conduct surveillance on terrorist suspects regardless of how many communication devices they use. Roving wiretaps are nothing new. Domestic law enforcement agencies have had roving wiretaps for criminal investigations since 1986.
- § Business Records: This provision allows the FBI, after obtaining approval from a federal judge, to access tangible items, including business records, in foreign intelligence, international terrorism and espionage cases.
- § Lone Wolf: National security laws allow intelligence gathering on foreign governments, terrorist groups and their agents. But what about a foreign terrorist who either acts alone or cannot be immediately tied to a terrorist organization? The lone wolf definition simply allows our intelligence officials to answer threats from terrorists acting alone. It cannot be used against a U.S. citizen.