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News ::
BTL: ACLU Sues Over Key Provision of USA Patriot Act... (english)
14 Aug 2003
...Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI Director Robert Mueller named as defendants. Interview with Tim Edgar, legislative counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union, conducted by Between the Lines' Scott Harris
ACLU Sues Over Key Provision of USA Patriot Act * Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI Director Robert Mueller named as defendants.

Interview with Tim Edgar, legislative counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union, conducted by Scott Harris

In what may become a landmark case in constitutional law, the America Civil Liberties Union filed the first legal challenge to the USA Patriot Act on July 30. The ACLU suit targets Section 215 of the law which empowers the FBI to search the records and property belonging to innocent U.S. citizens and legal immigrants. The case was filed on behalf of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and several other secular and religious organizations representing Arabic, South Asian and Islamic communities whose members have been frequent subjects of investigation under the Patriot Act.

The legislation, pushed by the Bush administration and passed by Congress with little debate shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks, granted unprecedented powers to the Justice Department and U.S. intelligence agencies. But the Patriot Act has come under increasing attack for what many view as the law's undermining of constitutionally guaranteed rights and protections. The GOP-controlled House of Representatives recently voted overwhelmingly to prevent the Justice Dept. from engaging in secret "sneak and peek" searches of people's homes. Nearly 150 communities in 27 states across the country have passed resolutions opposing the Patriot Act.

Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Tim Edgar, legislative counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union, who explains why his group initiated the lawsuit against the Patriot Act.

Contact the ACLU by calling (212) 549-2500 or visit their web site at: www.aclu.org

Related links

"U.S. Backs Florida's New Counterterrorism Database:'Matrix' Offers Law Agencies Faster Access to Americans' Personal Records," by Robert O'Harrow Jr., Washington Post, Aug. 6, 2003

"Lawyers Furious as US Builds Death Chambers,", Times UK Online, July 5, 2003

"Critics Say White House Successor to USA Patriot Act Threatens Further Erosion of Civil Liberties," Between The Lines interview with Nancy Chang, Center for Constitutional Rights, Feb. 28, 2003

"Citizens Urged to Reverse Erosion of Civil Liberties Since Sept. 11," Between The Lines interview with Nancy Chang, Center for Constitutional Rights, Oct., 10, 2002

LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below:

http://www.btlonline.org
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"Between The Lines" is a half-hour syndicated radio news magazine that each week features a summary of under-reported news stories and interviews with activists and journalists who offer progressive perspectives on international, national and regional political, economic and social issues. Because "Between The Lines" is independent of all publications, media networks or political parties, we are able to bring a diversity of voices to the airwaves generally ignored or marginalized by the major media. For more information on this week's topics and to check out our text archive listing topics and guests presented in previous programs visit: http://www.btlonline.org
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"Between the Lines," WPKN 89.5 FM's weekly radio news magazine can be heard Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. ET; Wednesdays at 8 a.m. ET and Saturdays at 2 p.m. ET (Wednesday's show airs at 7:30 a.m. ET during fundraising months of April and October).
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For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Weekly Summary" which features a RealAudio link to the week's program for Between The Lines, send an email to btlsummary-subscribe (at) lists.riseup.net
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For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Q&A" which features a RealAudio link and weekly transcript to one of the interviews featured on Between The Lines, send an email to btlqa-subscribe (at) lists.riseup.net
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betweenthelines (at) snet.net
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Distributed by Squeaky Wheel Productions
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2003 Between The Lines. All Rights Reserved.
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See also:
http://www.btlonline.org
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