Allen West Says “no” on The Patriot Act. Citing many of the reason liberal members of the CBC voted against it, conservative Rep. Allen West joined the majority of the CBC and cast a vote against the Patriot Act. Though the Patriot Act passed the Senate and then the House last night view the results by a vote of 250 to 153, West was a NO.
Only 4 members of the CBC voted for the Patriot Act yesterday. They were Reps. Sanford Bishop of Georgia, G.K Butterfield of NC, Terri Sewell of Alabama and David Scott of Georgia. Reps. Jesse Jackson Jr and John Conyers did not vote.
Saying he spent two months studying the provisions in the Patriot Act, he said the following:
“As a Member of the House of Representatives, I have taken an oath to protect the constitutional rights of the citizens of the 22nd Congressional District of Florida and all Americans… After much reading, many briefings, and conversations with local law enforcement and federal agents, including FBI Director Robert Mueller, I am not fully convinced that by extending these provisions for four years, we would be any safer, but instead I fear they may only give us the illusion of being safer.”
He added, in a statement that, “I also have concerns that these provisions were pushed through during the final hours on the very last day before the provisions were set to expire, and there was no open process for myself and other members of Congress to fully review the document.” In a letter to FBI Director Robert Mueller last week West requested clarifications on several issues. The FBI did not respond to his questions.
Rep. West requested a, “breakdown of how many times these provisions have been used on citizens and non-citizens? How many people were ever convicted or investigated? Out of those held, how many were released without being charged? Are there any individuals that are still being held that were never charged? What intelligence, if anything, came from these instances in which Section 206 was implemented?”
“There is a constant struggle between liberty and safety,” West stated.