Senate surveillance (FISA) roll calls

There were two major votes on the ‘Protect’ America Act (FISA) surveillance bill in the Senate today.  Civil liberties lost both times.  The fight now moves to the House. A 15-day extension is possible. mcjoan has more on Kos.

The first vote was on an an amendment to strike immunity for telecos, which went down 67-31. A “yea” vote is in favor of holding corporations responsible for unconstitutional activities; an “nay” vote is to give them immunity.

Democrats: 30 yea (including Obama and Reid), 18 nay (including Rockefeller and Feinstein), one not voting (Clinton)

Independents: 1 yea (Sanders), 1 nay (Lieberman)

Republicans: 0 yea, 49 nay (including McCain), 1 not voting (Graham)

Details here; mcjoan has a list of the 31 heroes. Hillary Clinton, who was campaigning in Texas

The next vote was on the bill itself. A yes vote approves warrantless surveillance; a ‘no’ vote is to uphold the Fourth Amendment. Yes, it really is that stark. Final results, thanks to TPM: 68 yes, 29 no (including Feinstein*), 3 no vote (including Obama and Clinton).

A sad day for civil liberties in the U. S.

The one silver lining here is that.  A majority of the Democratic party and their Senatorial leadership squarely embraced civil liberties. So did both presidential candidates (Hillary Clinton didn’t vote, but her spokesperson issued a statement expressing strong opposition). Back in November and December, there were a lot of questions whether the Democratic party would roll over on this. While many individuals crossed over, the party as a whole did not. Whew. Chris Dodd, Patrick Leahy, and Russ Feingold for Congressional Medals of Honor!

* Update, 11:45 p.m.: comments on Calitics highlight that Feinstein’s “no” vote was after voting for cloture immunity. One out of three ain’t good; but it is better than zero out of three.

Update, 8:30 a.m.: clarifying that Obama voted on immunity, but not the bill itself