Mitch McConnell Schedules Last Minute Session for Patriot Act Provision

Unable to end a struggle over how to deal with government surveillance programs, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scheduled a last-minute session to consider retaining the National Security Agency's bulk collection of domestic phone records. McConnell warned against allowing the controversial NSA program and other key surveillance activities under the USA Patriot Act to expire at midnight May 31. He said he would call the Senate into session that day, a Sunday, and seek action before the deadline. Senator Rand Paul, Kentucky's other senator and a Republican presidential candidate, called the Senate's failure to allow an extension of the surveillance programs during a late-night session Friday into Saturday a victory for privacy rights. By the time senators broke for the holiday, they had blocked a House-passed bill and several short-term extensions of the key provisions in the Patriot Act.



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