USA FREEDOM Act just became a campaign issue in Montana’s Senate race


The National Security Agency’s domestic surveillance programs have made it into the Montana Senate race in a new ad from Rep. Steve Daines (R-MT), who will take on newly-minted Sen. John Walsh (D-MT) this fall.

“We see abuses of power every day — overspending, Obamacare, the IRS. But the NSA’s program of collecting our phone records is really troubling,” Daines says in the 30-second ad. “As someone who worked in high tech, I know what government can do with our data. That’s why I stood up to the Washington establishment and supported the USA FREEDOM Act, to stop the NSA from collecting the records of innocent Americans.”

Daines is an original cosponsor to the USA FREEDOM Act, a bipartisan measure introduced by Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) in October. The legislation would end the NSA’s bulk data collection program and close loopholes intelligence agencies could exploit to gain access to Americans’ personal information.

It’s worth noting that Daines voted for Rep. Justin Amash’s (R-MI) amendment to deny funding to execute a FISA court order that isn’t specific to a person at the center of an actual investigation. Amash recently told United Liberty that “[t]here’s more than enough votes to pass the FREEDOM Act.” Leadership from both parties in Congress, however, are stalling on a vote.

Daines has introduced legislation to repeal the controversial REAL ID Act, a measure that ostensibly creates a national identification program by mandating that states meeting certain federal requirements for drivers licenses. Montana is one of several states to reject the mandates.

H/T: David Freddoso

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