‘We Are Killing FISA’: Speaker Mike Johnson Dealt Huge Blow


On Wednesday, the GOP-led House of Representatives voted to block the bill that would reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This law gives broad investigative power to America’s intelligence agencies, including the potential for Americans’ communications to be obtained without a warrant. The procedural vote failed, with 228 votes against it and 193 in favor. Joining Democrats against the reauthorization were 19 Republicans encouraged to do so by presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump.

Republican “no” votes included:

Biggs (AZ)

Crane (AZ)

Luna (FL)

Perry (PA)

Bishop (NC)

Gaetz (FL)

Mace (SC)

Rosendale (MT)

Boebert (CO)

Good (VA)

Mills (FL)

Roy (TX)

Burchett (TN)

Gosar (AZ)

Norman (SC)

Steube (FL)

Cloud (TX)

Higgins (LA)

Ogles (TN)

In response to the motion’s defeat, Johnson called a House Republican Conference meeting Wednesday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time to “regroup” as he seeks to renew FISA surveillance by April 19.

While some reforms have been proposed, Republican dissenters do not feel the bill has gone far enough to address numerous instances of illegal surveillance undertaken by the FBI and the CIA. Intelligence officials have been caught using FISA surveillance — which is designed for surveillance on foreign citizens — to illegally spy on members of the Trump campaign in 2016, January 6 protesters and Republican politicians.

The current fight over renewal hinges on an amendment that would require intelligence officials to obtain a warrant before engaging in FISA surveillance. No such measure is included in Johnson’s bill, although Johnson appeared to have consented to an amendment vote on the matter, Breitbart News reported.

An amendment to include warrant requirements would likely pass easily, though some Republicans who voted against the rule Wednesday might insist that the warrant requirement is placed in the underlying bill before allowing it to move to the floor.

Wednesday’s result was likely impacted by former President Donald Trump’s vocal opposition to the rule. “Kill FISA,” wrote the former president in a Truth Social post. “IT WAS ILLEGALLY USED AGAINST ME, AND MANY OTHERS. THEY SPIED ON MY CAMPAIGN!!!”


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