Idaho Examiner - Sen. Larry Craig News Releases

Thursday, December 22, 2005

SENATE EXTENDS PATRIOT ACT FOR SIX MONTHS

Craig calls this a “clear victory”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Senate has agreed to extend the USA PATRIOT Act for six months so that concerns over civil liberties raised by Idaho Senator Larry Craig and others can be addressed.

On Monday, Craig and Senators Hagel, R-Neb., Sununu, R-N.H., and Murkowski, R-Alaska, proposed a three-month extension. The extension was designed to ensure the Bush Administration retains the important tools afforded by the Act to fight terrorism while differences over provisions of the Patriot reauthorization bill are worked out. Craig worked with his colleagues, Senate leadership, and the Administration on the extension agreed to today.

In reaction Craig stated, “It was never my intention to let the Patriot Act expire. President Bush needs the tools to fight terrorism and protect Americans. However, when we permanently authorize vast powers to the government, we must do it right. When a law will be on the books for decades, spanning Presidents and generations, we can’t make assumptions that everyone will act with the integrity of the Bush Administration.

“This extension is a clear victory for those of us who stood our ground for civil liberty – the very liberty that tens of thousands of Americans have died to protect.”

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