Congressman Kerry Bentivolio

Representing the 11th District of Michigan

Bentivolio cosponsors USA FREEDOM Act to restore privacy rights

Oct 29, 2013
Press Release
Today, Rep. Bentivolio sponsored the USA FREEDOM Act which was introduced this morning by Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis). If enacted, this bill will restore privacy rights by ending the government’s dragnet collection of American’s phone records. Additionally, the bill improves oversight, transparency, and accountability with respect to domestic surveillance authorities.
 
“This is one of the strongest constitutional privacy bills introduced this session,” Rep. Bentivolio remarked. “As new revelations emerge about what the NSA is doing with Americans’ private phone calls and e-mails, who they are sharing them with, and their deceptive portrayal of the value of this information, it’s increasingly clear that it’s time to revise the NSA’s privilege to spy on Americans for national security purposes.”
 
The USA FREEDOM Act includes the Ending Secret Law Act, which Rep. Bentivolio co-sponsored in June, and shares several features with the Amash-Conyers “Libert-E” Act. Both bills would restrict the federal government’s ability under the Patriot Act to collect information on Americans who are not connected to any ongoing investigations, and both would make Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court opinions available to Congress and the public to increase transparency and accountability.  The USA FREEDOM Act also amends Title 4 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, known as the pen register and trap-and-trace provisions, to make sure the government does not just rebuild its metadata dragnet using different authorities.
 
As a member of the Privacy Caucus, Rep. Bentivolio has sponsored multiple bills to defend and restore the privacy of law-abiding citizens, and voted for the Amash-Conyers amendment to rein in the NSA in this year’s Defense appropriation bill.  He also voted against the controversial “CISPA” bill, which would have allowed companies to share users’ private personal information with various federal agencies. 

To view the USA FREEDOM Act in its entirety, please 
click here.