From a report about the impact of the USA PATRIOT Act written by the Center for Consitutional Rights:> "The Bush Administration's war against terrorism, without boundary or clear end-point, has led to serious abrogation of the rights of the people and the obligations of the federal government. Abuses, of Fourth and Fifth Amendment rights in particular, have been rampant, but more disturbing is the attempt to codify into law practices that erode privacy, free speech, and the separation of powers that is the hallmark of our democracy."Lest anyone think that only the Bush Administration is behind this erosion of Constitutional rights, Congress has generally allowed itself to be led along by the nose by the Bush Administration. A few more stout-hearted Senators like Russ Feingold and maybe we wouldn't be talking about the USA PATRIOT Act today.
Crazily enough, Republican challengers to Feingold in Wisconsin are trying to bash Feingold over the fact that he was the only US Senator to vote against the USA PATRIOT Act. What is the strategy behind such a maneuver? "Hi. Vote for me. I'm against individual rights and free speech, unlike Russ Feingold." "Vote for Republican challenger Blah! He wants the government to monitor your speech and reading habits! He believes the FBI has a right to search your home without a warrant!" Stupid. Of course, even dumber are the people who will vote for such a guy just because he carries the Republican label without even pausing to think about what they are voting to support.