Congressman Paul Broun today voted against the House Democratic Leadership's legislation seeking to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Despite the existence of majority support in the House for the Senate bill that reauthorizes the intelligence program, Speaker Nancy Pelosi refuses to allow the House to debate or vote on the Senate language. Key to the Democratic leadership's objections to the Senate bill is language objected to by special interest groups representing trial lawyers. The Senate language would prevent lawyers from suing patriotic telephone companies that cooperated with the federal government in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
"It has been 27 days since the Protect America Act, which allows our intelligence agencies to use the tools FISA provides, expired and the Democratic Leadership continues to play political games with our national defense on behalf of special interest groups." said Broun. "Today's vote on legislation which has neither the support of the Senate or the President, was merely a sham for Democrats who fear facing constituents over the upcoming district work period without a fig leaf to cover their shame. Today's sham vote places America at continued risk, and as a Marine and member of the Homeland Security Committee, I am offended at these ongoing political games."
Last Thursday, March 6, at a Committee markup on legislation regarding the security of our nation's chemical plants, Congressman Paul Broun (R-GA) offered a motion to postpone Committee proceedings until the House takes action on S. 2248, the Senate-passed Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) authorization. Congressman Broun's attempt to force action on the Protect America Act failed on a party line 15-11 vote.
Attached is sound of Congressman Broun discussing today's vote. Audio cuts are in mp3 format (64kbps mono).
Broun on Fisa -- :49 - Entire Broun quote as provided in the above text.
FISA2 -- :18 - Democrats continue to play political games -- Outcue: " special interest groups."
FISA3 -- :17 - Today's vote was a sham -- Outcue: " cover their shame."
FISA4 -- :13 - Today's vote places America at continued risk-- Outcue: "...ongoing political games."