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News ::
Why a civil libertarian supported the Patriot Act (english)
02 Jul 2003
Modified: 03 Jul 2003
"I'm as interested in openness and freedom as anybody. But ... the Constitution is not a suicide pact."
U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons (R-CT) said the Patriot Act increases communication among intelligence bureaus and improves electronic surveillance methods, which could prevent future attacks such as those that happened on Sept. 11, 2001. "I'm a civil libertarian," he continued. "I'm as interested in openness and freedom as anybody. But ... the Constitution is not a suicide pact."

However beneficial to traffic, mass transit systems are potential terrorist targets and must be defended said Simmons. He thinks one way to keep commuters safe is the USA PATRIOT Act, which among other provisions allows intelligence officials access to the library records of a suspected terrorist.

"If the target of an investigation goes to the New York Public Library and spends a substantial amount of time reading and researching ... the subway system, I think that is a legitimate concern for authorities," said Simmons, a former CIA officer.

Simmons said that the Stonington activists who unsuccessfully petitioned to hold a town vote to condemn the Patriot Act have "blown (the issue) way out of proportion" because the "average citizen" would not be affected by this law.

"With the very limited assets (intelligence officials) have available, they won't waste time on people who aren't legitimate targets of an investigation," he said. "I don't anticipate anyone accessing the Stonington Free Library is going to be the target of an investigation."

But a local resident lost his life in the World Trade Center because authorities did not have the tools to track potential terrorists, Simmons said. "Josh Piver is dead because we couldn't connect the dots."

By Phoebe Hall, The Westerly Sun

I know what you're asking, "Simmons is a Republican right? So what does he have to do with libertarians?" Read on...

A New Way to Defeat the Liberals:
The Club for Growth is taking the left's successful tactics and using them to advance our own free-market beliefs and defeat the liberals. Members of the Club for Growth write their checks out directly to the candidates they support.

The Club for Growth's PAC gave direct contributions in the highly competitive 2000 elections. Only two incumbent House Democrats were defeated, and we're proud to report that the Club played a significant role in both these defeats. Rob Simmons, the CT-02 candidate who received the largest Club PAC direct contribution (and another $5,000 that members gave to him on their own), scored a huge upset over Democratic incumbent Sam Gejdenson.

Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC):
Rob Booth, a long time RLC member, is "a fine example to all our members on how to be a good Republican patriot, fighting for liberty and freedom in the trenches." Rob helped RLC's Texas advisor John Culberson (R-TX) to raise money and recruit volunteers for the four "Endangered
Republican Freshmen," which included Rob Simmons (R-CT).

Holding Firm the "Free" Market:
Simmons voted against several bills that called for tough new standards and held executives accountable for questionable practices until poll numbers left him no choice. For example, in the wake of Enron, Simmons voted against the House Democratic corporate accountability bill, which would have imposed safeguards on corporate fraud. Simmons also opposed closing the "Bermuda" tax loophole -- a loophole which allows departing corporate executives to cash in on millions while leaving behind plummeting shareholder value or bankruptcy.

Selling Social Security:
Rob Simmons voted against stopping the White House from implementing the Social Security plan developed by President Bush's Social Security Commission. The Bush Commission was stacked to include only proponents of privatization -- and ultimately recommended three possible plans, all of which include some privatization of Social Security. Simmons has also received $5,000 from Club for Economic Growth, an organization which would like nothing better than to subject Social Security to the whims of a volatile stock market. Asked whether the volatility of the stock market has made him more cautious about advocating the overthrow of the Social Security system, Club for Growth's President, Steve Moore, said, "Not at all." Simmons also refused to sign Campaign for America's Future Pledge to protect Social Security.

Tax cuts & Labor cuts :
An interim scorecard from the AFL-CIO says that Simmons has voted AGAINST labor in 81% of his votes. Specifically, Rob Simmons voted for the GOP "stimulus" package, which included $25 billion in payments to big business and a $254 million tax rebate for Enron, but did not include significant provisions for displaced workers. He voted to pass a resolution that gutted ergonomics rules submitted by the Labor Department, which would require businesses to take steps to prevent work-related repetitive stress disorders such as carpal tunnel syndrome. He also opposed an increase in the minimum wage

Simmons is also one of ninety House members belonging to the "Zero Capital Gains Tax Caucus."

Drilling for Oil:
Simmons voted to slash environmental cleanup funding and shift more of the expense of cleanup from industry to taxpayers. Simmons was the only member of the Connecticut delegation that voted for Bush's Energy Plan, which included $33.5 billion in tax breaks and other incentives for the power industry. The plan also provided for drilling in Article National Wildlife Refuge, a pristine natural treasure and minimal source of oil.
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Rape, Pilfer and Carnage=G.O.P. (english)
02 Jul 2003
This Republican "CLOWN", is a pea brain. Or as my father would say...a BB brain!
Anyone who supports the Patriot Act is a sell out to ALL of us. To ignore the Constitution and Bill Of Rights? Because the government KNEW years in advance about bin Ladens attack with passenger jets, and did nothing, to secure airports? The GOVERNMENT is dead wrong. Not us. WE are being punished for the GOVERNMENTS fuck ups. THAT isn't right.
Wait till next election. Dubya is gone. You'll see. I don't care how much money he raises. Won't matter. He fucked with the primary voters. The elderly. Medicare and Social Security. Nothing will save his under-educated ass!(I know he attended Yale and Harvard...So. He's still a dumb ass in my book!) I hope all those right wing clowns lose. They deserve it.
The Constitution IS a suicide pact. (english)
03 Jul 2003
The Constitution is a suicide pact. The assumption is that one is better dead than enslaved. Only cowards choose safety over freedom.
See also:
Why a civil libertarian supported the Patriot Act (english) Comment
28 Apr 2016
I found this article and was really surprised that tribal communities did not supported this patriot act at that time.