House Passes CISPA: Red Alert! CISPA Passes with Fourth Amendment Busting Provisions

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Speaker Boehner said that the White House was in ‘a camp all by themselves.’ | POLITICO Staff

By KEITH PERINE and JENNIFER MARTINEZ | 4/26/12 7:17 PM EDT Updated: 4/26/12 8:35 PM EDT

The House passed the controversial CISPA cybersecurity bill on Thursday, defying a White House veto threat and throwing the issue squarely into the Senate’s lap.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) said the bill was “needed to prepare for countries like Iran and North Korea so that they don’t do something catastrophic to our networks here in America.”

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The final tally was 248-168, enough to pass the measure but not enough to override the threatened veto. Forty-two Democrats broke with the White House to vote for the bill, and 28 Republicans voted against it.

The administration and Democratic critics opposed the bill because of privacy and civil liberties concerns. The other main sticking point was that, unlike a Senate bill by Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), CISPA would not mandate new security requirements for a critical infrastructure network.

Although those disagreements still exist, House Republicans have now jumped ahead of the Senate in a race to avoid the political fallout in the event of a major cyberattack.

At least some of CISPA’s Democratic supporters weren’t happy with their colleagues’ opposition to the bill, nor with the White House.

After the White House issued the veto threat Wednesday, Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, Rogers’s chief Democratic ally, launched an all-out lobbying effort to persuade his fellow Democrats to back the bill.

“We worked it. We worked it hard, we contacted people personally. Many people I talked to just on the floor,” Ruppersberger of Maryland said after the bill passed. “This [issue] is very complicated, a lot of people didn’t understand it.” He said that, as of Thursday morning, he didn’t know how much Democratic support there was for the bill.

“Yesterday was a tough day for me with the White House,” Ruppersberger said.

Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) a CISPA co-sponsor, echoed Ruppersberger.

“It was disappointing, I think it could have been handled differently,” Langevin said of the White House move. “To do it at this stage, I don’t think it was very helpful to get an information-sharing bill through.”

Langevin and other supportive Democrats say CISPA is needed to counter the possibility of a major cyberattack.

“This is not a perfect bill, but the threat is great,” Ruppersberger said on the House floor on Thursday.

Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that the White House was in “a camp all by themselves.” Nevertheless, most Democrats voted against the bill.

“CISPA would trample the privacy and consumer rights of our citizens while leaving our critical infrastructure vulnerable,” an administration official said Thursday in response to Boehner. “We need Congress to address this critical national and economic security challenge while respecting the values of freedom, privacy, openness and innovation so fundamental to our nation.”

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CISPA Passes with Fourth Amendment Busting Provisions

Kurt Nimmo
April 26, 2012

Sudden action on CISPA today signals that the House was instructed to pass the legislation despite overwhelming opposition. It was rushed to the floor a day early and quickly brought to a vote with additional amendments.

Alex Jones reports on the passage of CISPA. As of this writing, the corporate media has not bothered to post a video.

“Pushing the bill through is bad enough, but what’s worse are the amendments that Rep. Ben Quayle (R – AZ) managed to get added. These amendments make CISPA infinitely worse than it already was,” writes Game Politics.

The amendments converted the supposed “cybersecurity” bill into an outright Big Brother surveillance tool that completely nullifies Fourth Amendment protection online.

From Techdirt:

Previously, CISPA allowed the government to use information for “cybersecurity” or “national security” purposes. Those purposes have not been limited or removed. Instead, three more valid uses have been added: investigation and prosecution of cybersecurity crime, protection of individuals, and protection of children. Cybersecurity crime is defined as any crime involving network disruption or hacking, plus any violation of the CFAA.

Basically this means CISPA can no longer be called a cybersecurity bill at all. The government would be able to search information it collects under CISPA for the purposes of investigating American citizens with complete immunity from all privacy protections as long as they can claim someone committed a “cybersecurity crime”. Basically it says the 4th Amendment does not apply online, at all. Moreover, the government could do whatever it wants with the data as long as it can claim that someone was in danger of bodily harm, or that children were somehow threatened—again, notwithstanding absolutely any other law that would normally limit the government’s power.

Dirty tricks were used to pass CISPA. The legislation allows the national security state to circumvent the Constitution and allow carte blanche surveillance of the internet – from computer networks to private computers and devices to the emerging “internet of things.” Passage of CISPA is a milestone for the high-tech surveillance police state now going in place.

The traitors in Congress threw up a wilted fig leaf to cover their posteriors. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) said the bill was “needed to prepare for countries like Iran and North Korea so that they don’t do something catastrophic to our networks here in America,” Politico reports, while Speaker of the House John Boehner said the legislation will protect the economy and create jobs.

Rogers’ transparent excuse was is little more than a sick joke considering the fact the U.S. and Israel unleashed the Stuxnet virus on Iran’s computer network. North Korea is a convenient culprit and its ability to attack the United States is seriously in question, especially after another failure to put a satellite in orbit, something the former Soviet Union and the United States did over half a century ago.

Following the defeat of SOPA and PIPA earlier this year, Congress was told to sell CISPA as a bulwark against terrorism. Obama has promised to veto the bill but this remains to be seen and is likely yet another trick.

In December at the last moment Obama signed the NDAA after he said he would veto it. No doubt he will perform the same parlor trick with CISPA.

Call your representatives now and strongly voice your condemnation. Also call your senator and warn him or her that there will be serious repercussions if they vote this monstrosity into law.

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