Amash, Polis urge House leaders to stop warrantless surveillance in year-end spending legislation
Bipartisan letter signed by 36 representatives asks for five House-passed measures to end civil-liberties abuses
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representatives Justin Amash (R-Mich.) and Jared Polis (D-Colo.) sent a letter to House leaders yesterday calling for provisions restricting warrantless government surveillance in any upcoming government-funding legislation. Thirty-four of their House colleagues also signed the letter.
The letter – which is addressed to Speaker Paul Ryan, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Appropriations Committee Chairman Harold Rogers, and Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Nita M. Lowey – specifically requests the inclusion of five privacy-focused amendments that passed the House earlier this year with bipartisan support. The amendments would stop taxpayer dollars from being used to fund activities including warrantless bulk data collection and backdoor searches by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the National Security Agency (NSA).
“Though there are many divergent views among Republicans and Democrats on a variety of spending matters, the need to safeguard the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment and protect Americans’ rights is an issue on which there is far-reaching consensus,” the representatives wrote. “Republican and Democratic members of Congress – and, more importantly, the constituents we all represent – overwhelmingly agree that tax dollars should not be used to fund the warrantless surveillance of American citizens.”
The five privacy measures for which the letter advocates all passed the House of Representatives with far-reaching bipartisan support over the summer during consideration of H.R. 2578, the Commerce, Justice Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016, and H.R. 2685, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2016. Three of the measures passed on voice vote, indicating that approval in the chamber was unanimous or near unanimous. The measures are as follows:
In addition to Amash and Polis, the letter was signed by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Jeff Duncan (R-SC), John J. Duncan, Jr. (R-TN), Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Paul A. Gosar (R-AZ), Morgan H. Griffith (R-VA), Andy Harris (R-MD), Mike Honda (D-CA), Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), Darrell E. Issa (R-CA), Walter B. Jones, Jr. (R-NC), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Ted Lieu (D-CA), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Thomas Massie (R-KY), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Mark Meadows (R-NC), Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), Beto O’Rourke (D-TX), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Ted Poe (R-TX), Bill Posey (R-FL), Matt Salmon (R-AZ), Mark Sanford (R-SC), David Schweikert (R-AZ), Marlin A. Stutzman (R-IN), Mark Takano (D-CA), and Peter Welch (D-VT).
The full text of the letter is available here.
Amash to host town hall in Middleville
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) announced a town hall meeting in Middleville.
The town hall is open to the public.WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: Tuesday, November 10, 2015 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. WHERE: Middleville Village Hall 100 E Main St Middleville, MI 49333
Amash Presents Purple Heart
Third District veteran receives honor for wartime service
Grand Rapids, Mich. – Rep. Justin Amash presented six medals, including the Purple Heart, to retired Army Specialist Samuel N. Andres at a ceremony held at Kent County Veterans Services on Wednesday, October 14.
Spc. Andres is a veteran of the Vietnam War. On Friday, September 13, 1968, Andres and his four-man squad were attacked while on night patrol south of Pleiku. Over the course of the nearly hour-long firefight, Andres was struck by two bullets, sustaining injuries to his right leg. On the request and with the assistance of Andres’s family, including his wife Mary, the United States Army approved Spc. Andres’s medals, including the Purple Heart, in May 2015.
The Purple Heart is awarded in the name of the president of the United States. First issued under the administration of George Washington, this prestigious award signifies that, as the result of hostile actions, the recipient was wounded or killed while actively serving our country in the United States Armed Forces.
Pictures from the ceremony are included with this release.
Amash to host town halls in Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, and Hastings
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) announced town hall meetings in Battle Creek, Grand Rapids, and Hastings.
The town halls are open to the public.WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: Tuesday, October 13, 2015 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. WHERE: Miller Stone Building 77 Capital Ave NE Battle Creek, MI 49017 __________________________________________________________ WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: Wednesday, October 14, 2015 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. WHERE: Kent County Building 300 Monroe Ave NW Third Floor Grand Rapids, MI 49503 __________________________________________________________ WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: Friday, Octber 16, 2015 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. WHERE: Hastings City Hall 201 E State St Hastings, MI 49058 Read More
Amash to host town hall in Grand Rapids Township
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) announced a town hall meeting in Grand Rapids Township.
The town hall is open to the public.WHAT: Town Hall Meeting WHEN: Monday, September 21, 2015 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. WHERE: Grand Rapids Charter Township Hall 1836 East Beltline NE Grand Rapids, MI 49525 Read More
114 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Representative Justin Amash (pronounced uh-MOSH) represents Michigan’s Third District in the 113th United States Congress. He was elected to his first term on November 2, 2010.
Justin was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He received his bachelor’s degree with High Honors in Economics from the University of Michigan and his Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School. He worked for his family’s business, as a business lawyer, and as a Michigan state representative before his election to Congress.
Justin has never missed a vote in Congress or in the Michigan Legislature out of more than 3,000 roll call votes. He is leading the incorporation of Facebook and other social media into his work as an elected official by posting an explanation of every vote online, and he has set new standards for transparency and accountability.
Justin believes government overspending is one of the biggest threats to our economic health and national security, and he has introduced an innovative balanced budget amendment—the Business Cycle Balanced Budget Amendment—to control government spending and reduce the national debt. He supports a fair and simple tax code and a regulatory environment that promotes economic prosperity.
As an ardent defender of Americans’ civil liberties, Justin has been a leading critic of theunconstitutional suspicionless mass collection of all Americans’ phone records, the indefinite detention provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), and the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA).
When asked by a New York Times reporter to describe his voting methodology, Justin explained: “I follow a set of principles, I follow the Constitution. And that’s what I base my votes on. Limited government, economic freedom, and individual liberty.”
Justin is a member of the Joint Economic Committee and Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (OGR). He serves on the OGR subcommittees on National Security andGovernment Operations. Justin chairs the House Liberty Caucus.
Justin lives in Cascade Charter Township with his wife Kara, a graduate of Calvin College and a former elementary school teacher. Justin and Kara have three children.
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An excerpt from my comments before questioning witnesses at the House Oversight Committee hearing on the #FlintWaterCrisis: "The State of Michigan
Grateful to this coalition for sending the letter below in support of my bipartisan bill, #HR4350, to protect your privacy and rights. ### Dear