Rep. Miller Supports Critical Civil Liberties Amendment to Defense Funding Bill

Washington, Jul 26, 2013 -

Our government must have the resources it needs to secure our nation from those who wish to cause us harm. At the same time, steps to protect the United States from terrorism and other threats to our national security must not undermine our constitutional rights.  The National Security Agency’s (NSA) blanket collection of Americans’ phone records has tipped the balance between national security and the preservation of our civil liberties. This practice must end immediately.

On Wednesday, I voted for an amendment to the FY 2014 defense funding bill that would prohibit the NSA from indiscriminately collecting the phone records of millions of Americans. Specifically, the amendment would limit the agency’s ability to obtain this information to only those individuals who are actively under investigation. Despite receiving significant bipartisan support, the amendment was narrowly defeated.

Despite the defeat of the amendment, this is a debate that Congress must continue to have. We must meet the challenge of terrorism with careful regard for the fundamental civil liberties of Americans. As this important debate continues, I want you to know that I will work with my colleagues to protect our nation from threats at home and abroad while upholding the principles of freedom and liberty enshrined in our Constitution.

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