Thursday, September 6, 2007

Patriot Act hits Roadblock

Judge strikes down part of Patriot Act
Thursday, September 06, 2007 09:54:52 AM

A federal judge struck down parts of the revised USA Patriot Act on Thursday, saying investigators must have a court's approval before they can order Internet providers to turn over records without telling customers.

U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero said the government orders must be subject to meaningful judicial review and that the recently rewritten Patriot Act "offends the fundamental constitutional principles of checks and balances and separation of powers."

The American Civil Liberties Union had challenged the law, complaining that it allowed the FBI to demand records without the kind of court order required for other government searches.

The ACLU said it was improper to issue so-called national security letters, or NSLs – investigative tools used by the FBI to compel businesses to turn over customer information – without a judge's order or grand jury subpoena.

Conservative Bloggers Comments
I feel dirty even thinking that I might have agreed with a position that the ACLU has taken, but here we are. The oversight of government is key to it functioning properly and with proper restraint. While the computer age is making us rethink how these things all balance out, I am of the opinion that we cannot forget that it is the individual citizen that benefits from the oversight. We will have to find the compromise that allows our governmental agencies to do their jobs properly but yet still leaves intact the right and need to review/approve these actions.

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