The Senate voted 69 to 28 to pass a bill granting liability protection to telecommunication companies that participated in secret domestic spying for the government after September 11th.
Amending the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the bill allows for the practice of a “no-warrant necessary” surveillance by the government.
Bush, who is expected to sign the bill in a Rose Garden ceremony Thursday afternoon, claims, “This bill will help our intelligence professionals learn who the terrorists are talking to, what they’re saying, and what they’re planning.”
Many see the bill as an infringement on civil liberties, and Bush’s detractors (practically the whole country–or at least those who don’t watch Fox News) see this as another overstep and abuse of power by Bush as he nears the end of his term.
More shockingly, though, is Barack Obama’s vote in favor of the bill (John McCain didn’t vote). “Given the choice between voting for an improved yet imperfect bill, and losing important surveillance tools, Senator Obama chose to support” the legislation, his office told the AP.