MCLU Town Meeting on Patriot Act and other Civil Liberties Issues
Portland City Hall, 7 pm
April 18, 2006
The Maine Civil Liberties Union, of which I am a member, held two Town Meetings on the Patriot Act, in Portland on the 18th, and in Bangor on the 20th. Both of these informative sessions, highlighting the active threats to our civil liberties from the Bush Administration, played to packed houses. I attended the one in Portland.

The Patriot Act and other civil liberties are key components in this U.S. Senate race. Sen. Olympia Snowe voted for the initial Patriot Act, and she voted for its reauthorization in February.

Olympia Snowe is also one of the authors of a pending bill, which would make legal the Bush Administrations patently illegal wiretapping of American citizens, in violation of the 1978 FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) provisions. Under her bill, a paper-tiger oversight committee would be set up to receive whatever information the Bush Administration might chose to reveal. The committee would have no subpoena power to demand further information from the White House, and its members would be forbidden from discussing anything revealed to it by the Administration, even if those revelations involved illegal activity.