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Senate passes PATRIOT Act extension, 86-12

February 16, 2011 - by Donny Shaw

The Senate last night took the 10-month extension of the PATRIOT Act provisions, whittled it down to 3 months, passed it and sent it back to the House for a follow-up vote. Democratic and Republican leaders in the Senate agreed to the shorter extension in order to assuage members who want to reform the government surveillance powers, but still keep the authority for the powers in effect in the meantime. This bill, which will now expire in May, gives Congress more time to hold hearings and a full floor debate on the PATRIOT Act, the leaders say.

The final vote was 86-12. Here are the 12 brave souls who voted against it:

Since the Senate amended the House bill, the House is going to have to vote one more time on this before it can become law. For a refresher on the government surveillance provisions that are being extended by this, see here.

Sen. Rand Paul, one of the leading Senate voices in opposition to extending the PATRIOT Act, is pictured above.  

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