Ron Paul to Congress: DO NOT Extend the “PATRIOT” Act!

Ron Paul spoke on the House floor today in opposition to extending the unconstitutional “PATRIOT” Act.

After Ron Paul’s speech, the motion to suspend the rules and pass the extension of three PATRIOT Act provisions failed by a vote of 277-148. Since they were attempting to pass it on the suspension calendar, the vote would have required two thirds (290 members) of the House to agree to it. Click here for the roll call vote to see how your representative voted.

This won’t be the last we’ve heard of the PATRIOT Act renewal in the House. The Campaign for Liberty is keeping a close eye on this issue; join their website for ongoing updates.


House Member: Mr. Speaker, I’m pleased at this time to recognize the distinguished gentleman from Texas, Mr. Ron Paul, for three minutes.

Mr. Speaker: The gentleman from Texas.

Ron Paul: I thank the gentlemen. I ask unanimous consent to extend and revise my remarks. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to this bill. I was opposed to the PATRIOT Act in 2001, and do not believe now that it’s a good idea to extend it. The 4th Amendment is rather clear, it says that we should be secure in our papers, our persons, our homes, and our effects. And that if warrants are to be issued, we have to do it with probably cause and describe in particular the places, the people and the things that we’re going to look at. And I think what has happened over the years has been that we have diluted the 4th Amendment. It was greatly diluted in 2001, but it started a lot earlier than that when the FISA law was originally written in 1978. That really introduced the notion that the 4th Amendment was relative and not absolute. And later on, it was further weakened in 1998 and then of course in 2001.

I think our reaction to the horrors of 9/11 – we can understand the concern and the fear that was developed – but I think the reaction took us in the wrong direction because the assumption was made, of course, that we weren’t spending enough money on surveillance. And even though then our intelligences agencies received $40 billion, they didn’t give us the right information. So now we’re spending $80 billion.

But it also looks like the conclusion was that the American people had too much privacy, and if we undermine the American people’s privacy, somehow or the another, we’re going to be safer. I think another thing that has come up lately has been that the purpose of government is to make us perfectly safe. Now it is good to be safe, but governments can’t make us safe. I question whether or not we have been made safer by the PATRIOT Act.

But let’s say a law makes us somewhat safer, is that a justification for the government to do anything they want? For instance, if you want to be perfectly safe from child abuse and wife beating, the government could put a camera in every one of our houses and our bedrooms and maybe there would be somebody made safer this way. But what would you be giving up?

So, perfect safety is not the purpose of government. What we want from government is to enforce the law and to protect our liberties. This, to me, has been especially since 9/11 a classical example of sacrificing liberty for safety and security. Now I didn’t invent those terms, they’ve been around for a long time and it’s easily justified. And I can understand it because I was here in 2001 when this came up and people become frightened. The American people want something done. But I think this is misdirected and it doesn’t serve our benefits.

So, I think this time we should really question why we’re extending this. We’re extending the three worst parts. Why were these sunsetted? Because people had concerns about them, they weren’t sure they were good pieces and maybe they were overkill and therefore they were saying, “We better reassess this”. So what have we done? We have already extended it twice and here we’re going to do it again with the intent, I think in a year, to reassess this. But this bill doesn’t make things worse, it doesn’t make anything better, but it does extend what I consider – and others consider – bad legislation. I ask for no vote on this legislation.

Mr. Speaker: The gentleman’s time has expired.

  • AxeloneX

    im democrat and i would vote for him

  • izaccy

    Absolute apart from Mox I have yet to see anyone covering
    that Obama wants to extend the so called Patriot Act

  • Rob

    So what really happened? Was it extended or was it not extended? I have heard that the extension pass and i have heard it did not pass. Whats the real deal?

  • timberwolves100

    515 Likes to 0 Dislikes… wow

  • notpcone

    The Patriot Act is nothing more than a pretty wrapped package that does NOTHING more than Give the Govt. more Power at the cost of our Freedoms.

  • HumanitoriumDOTcom

    Freedom of information will lead us to the truth and TRUE change. Protect and promote personal freedoms. Join the conversation at HumanitoriumDOTcom

  • Publik

    Hence the need for reverse surveillance. Always remember if the government has nothing to hide then it has nothing to fear. After causing so much terrorism, wars and tyranny in the world someone needs to prosecute the criminals in public office. Someone also needs to take a look at the books. Pre war plans, False flag operations, Pre emptive attacks on sovereign nations, Occupations, Genocide, Installing puppet gov’ts, Torture, Secret Prisons, Maiming, Rape, Pillage, Plunder, Destruction.


  • Publik

    Why do governments and covert agencies have secrets? No one else has all of the information. They create conspiracy. People have to guess. Hence the label ‘conspiracy theorist.’ We’re kept in the dark under the secrecy act and fed bullshit. Allegedly under the guise of national security. It’s not national security it is a national scam and in some cases, complicity to State Sanctioned Terror organised by governments and acted on by covert spy agencies like the CIA, Mossad, M16, TNI, ASIO etc.

  • David12King

    Oh lord, now they’re going to introduce a bill that puts a camera in all of our houses to make sure there is no child/wife beating 😉

  • machaeroguy

    Emergency does not create power. Emergency does not increase granted power or remove or diminish the restrictions imposed upon power granted or reserved. The Constitution was adopted in a period of grave emergency. Its grants of power to the federal government and its limitations of the power of the States were determined in the light of emergency, and they are not altered by emergency.
    -Justice Charles Evans Hughes

  • machaeroguy

    Every member of Congress should be wiretapped and filmed 24/7.

  • peacechicken

    Paul / Kucinich 2012!

  • JamesBlakeWilliams

    Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759 US author, diplomat, inventor, physicist, politician, & printer (1706 – 1790)

  • mango69

    I guess the 4 people who voted thumbs down to this video don’t appreciate freedom and liberty…. They should move to China.

  • msungs

    I am a former Police Officer who fled the USSA. When I worked at the Mall of America (Bloomington, MN) we received an intelligence bulletin from DHS (Department of Homeland Security). It said that anyone with a Ron Paul bumper sticker, Don’t Tread on Me Flag, Anti-Federal Reserve/Tax protesters, carriers or people who mention the US Constitution, Libertarians, Anti-Government Bumper Stickers, + even returning veterans are all possible domestic terrorists + should be scrutinized. Time to flee.

  • shirleymae30

    Ron Paul knows what is coming, so why is he not telling the American people to start growing food crops on every possible square foot of soil they have available to them ???. We are going to need those food resources desperately, when the globalist corporate monopoly’s control over resources are disrupted, crumble, or are being intentionally witheld from the citizens of the world.

  • shirleymae30

    He needs to give an Ezra Benson type of speech !!!. multiplied….X~10

  • shirleymae30

    Ron Paul has got to get much more vocal, aggressive emotional, angry, bold, impressive, confrontational, etc. etc. etc… He has got to give a landmark rant of a speech, that will expose the real truth and shake the whole world into waking up. to see what is going on. But, know this… things are far worse than even he has said !!! so far !!!.

  • stefanienava

    This is the hardest working man in congress.

  • ModernDayProphets

    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Feb. 17, 1775 Ben Franklin.