The Patriot Act May Be Dead Forever

The most controversial elements of the spying bill may never be coming back, lawmakers from both parties tell The Daily Beast. Here’s why.

Barring any last-minute compromises, powerful government surveillance authorities under the Patriot Act will expire at the stroke of midnight Monday. And they may never return.

This week, senators have been negotiating over whether to pass a House bill that would renew and tweak existing provisions in the long-controversial law, rather than let them “sunset” on June 1. But if the sunset comes and the provisions are off the books, lawmakers in both chambers would be facing a vote to reinstate controversial surveillance authorities, which is an entirely different political calculation.

Lawmakers may be unwilling to vote affirmatively for surveillance powers that many of them already dislike and have tried to rein in. “I think it is a real risk that if the provisions do expire, they would be more difficult to reinstate than to reform,” Representative Adam Schiff, the senior Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, told The Daily Beast.

– Read the entire article at The Daily Beast.