Letter: Senators Warner and Allen on domestic surveillance

February 13, 2003
Letter to Senators Warner and Allen

James Landrith
PO Box 8208
Alexandria, VA 22306-8208

February 13, 2003

The Honorable John William Warner
United States Senate
225 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510-4601

The Honorable George F. Allen
United States Senate
204 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510-4604

Dear Senators Warner and Allen:

As your constituent and the editor and publisher of The Multiracial Activist and the Abolitionist Examiner, I am writing to urge you to oppose S. 113, an amendment to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). I believe that the expansion of surveillance powers that this amendment would allow is unconstitutional and should be rejected. Other amendments, which attempt to provide much needed oversight to FISA, should be seriously considered. These amendments should restore Congressional oversight and reporting to a process that is now full of potential abuses.

For example, S. 113 would allow surveillance of individuals who have not been shown to be associated with any foreign terrorist organization. This act of defining an individual as a “foreign power” in and of himself is both dangerous and unconstitutional. It would provide far too much leeway for FISA surveillance without any checks on the usage of this power.

This week, the American Bar Association passed a resolution calling for Congressional oversight, precise reporting requirements, and additional amendments to ensure that FISA does not undermine Constitutional safeguards.

It is in your power to protect American citizens and residents from a further erosion of our civil liberties. I sincerely ask you to oppose S. 113 and to continue to look for ways in which to ensure that our nation may remain secure without undermining the freedoms and checks and balances provided us by our Constitution.


James Landrith

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