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Switchboard Shutdown: The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Flood Begins

Join the FISA Flood of 2007!

“Fix It, Defend the Constitution!”

That’s what we must tell Speaker Pelosi, Senator Reid and all our Members of Congress before they make FISA worse, rather than making it better.

Make it absolutely clear that fixing — not expanding — this ill-begotten law is exactly what we expect and demand.

Make three phone calls right now.

Dear Friend,

Fix it. Defend the Constitution! That’s the message we have to send to Speaker Pelosi, Senator Reid and every member of Congress over the next 20 days.

By all indications, the House and Senate will cast critical votes within three weeks — deciding whether or not to make the vast new spying powers that they granted the Bush Administration in August permanent.

We can’t let that happen. That’s why we’re starting the FISA Flood of 2007 with today’s leadership switchboard shutdown. All our members of Congress but especially leadership — who control the agenda and whose actions impact us all — need to know just how many Americans demand they act to restore the Constitution.  Here’s three things you can do, right now:

1. Call House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at (202) 225-4965.

2. Call Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid at (202) 224-3542.

3. Call your own representative. You can look up your representative’s phone number here.

It’s clear what freedom demands. And this is what we need every Member of Congress to hear:

  • Congress should not act on FISA until the Bush administration hands over the documents about the NSA wiretapping program.
  • Any legislation to permanently amend FISA must restore judicial review and protect the privacy rights of innocent Americans.
  • The government should receive only the information it is authorized to intercept by law, it should not be given direct and unfettered access to telecommunications infrastructure.
  • And the legislation must not grant amnesty to telecom companies that broke the law by illegally releasing Americans’ phone calls and records to the government.

Call right now as we launch the FISA Flood of 2007 — a monumental outpouring of grassroots energy. Demand that Congress stand strong by standing up for the Constitution, not caving in to the Bush Administration.

When Congress caved in to Bush fear-mongering by passing FISA legislation temporarily allowing the government to intercept the calls and emails of innocent Americans without a court order, there was a massive outcry from freedom-loving people across the country. Reeling from the backlash, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi promised to “fix” the legislation on their return this fall.

Now, as critical new votes approach, we’ve got to make it absolutely clear to Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and every member of Congress that fixing — not expanding — this ill-begotten law is exactly what we expect and demand.

Call right now: Join the the FISA Flood of 2007.

Earlier this week, the ACLU launched Don’t Wait for ’08 — a 100-day campaign urging Congress to act now to restore liberties lost during the relentless Bush assault on our civil liberties. Now, it seems apparent that the first 20 days of that campaign leading up to “make-or-break” FISA votes in mid-October could well be the most critical.

Given this Congress’ track record, we can’t leave anything to chance. In the days ahead, The FISA Flood of 2007 will unleash wave after wave of grassroots actions making it clear that we won’t tolerate waffling, wavering or wimping out when our fundamental freedoms are on the line.

We’ve got to make ourselves heard. Let our members of Congress know: if they stand tall for freedom, we will stand with them through thick and thin. And make sure they understand that, if they sell out the Constitution, we will unleash a wave of public protests and outrage unlike anything they have ever seen.

Make three phone calls for the Constitution right now.

Next, record your participation in our FISA Flood of 2007 tally. And then, forward this message to as many people as possible.

The ACLU is reaching out not only to our 550,000 ACLU members, but to every online activist who cares about protecting our most cherished freedoms. We need you to act immediately.

Help launch the FISA Flood of 2007 right now. Be part of a dramatic and sustained outpouring of concern that won’t yield until Congress has acted to protect the Constitution and reverse the civil liberties travesty that Congress perpetrated on the American people by granting President Bush vast new spying powers.

Thanks for standing with us.

Sincerely,

Caroline Fredrickson, ACLU
Caroline Fredrickson, Director
ACLU Washington Legislative Office

P.S.  Help build the first powerful wave of the FISA Flood of 2007. Make your three phone calls for the Constitution right now. Next, record your participation in our FISA Flood of 2007 tally. And then, forward this message to as many people as possible.

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