Sunday, May 31, 2015

Senate Votes to Consider House Bill on Surveillance

WASHINGTON — In a rare Sunday night session, the Senate voted overwhelmingly to begin a debate on a bill passed by the House to curtail a national security surveillance program approved after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. But the law that authorized the program was set to expire at midnight in the face of continuing opposition from Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky.
The 77-to-17 vote was a remarkable turnabout — grudgingly approved by the majority leader, Senator Mitch McConnell, a fellow Kentucky Republican — just a week after the Senate narrowly turned the bill away at his behest. Mr. McConnell, in a desperate attempt to keep the surveillance program going, encouraged senators to vote for a bill that he still found deficient.

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