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Bridget Johnson


February 12, 2014 - 1:59 pm
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Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) walked into D.C. District Court today to file his Fourth Amendment lawsuit against President Obama as the White House tread carefully around the claim.

“This is separate from my legislative function. This is being filed as an individual citizen. But I am pursuing reforms of the NSA,” Paul said outside court. “…I think also some reforms of the NSA can be done internally. But I think the president mistakes that — and this is a common mistake I think he makes — he says we’ll just hire some more lawyers from the White House. We’ll have some of these internal controls. That’s not due process. And they can’t decide on their own what the Fourth Amendment means.”

“Plaintiff and Class Representative Rand Paul is a citizen of the United States and a resident and citizen of Kentucky. Plaintiff Paul has standing to bring this suit because Defendants have, without legitimate legal basis, collected, stored, retained, and periodically searched telephone metadata concerning every domestic or international phone call he made or received since at least May 2006, and Defendants continue to do so,” states the lawsuit. “Plaintiff Paul uses and has used both cellular and/or landline telephones in the United States on a daily basis since May 2006, and he has been a subscriber of both cellular and landline telephone services since May 2006. Such telephone services have included, but not been limited to, Verizon Wireless and AT &T services. Plaintiff has a subjective expectation of privacy from Defendants about his telephone metadata that society views as reasonable.”

The other plaintiff is the nonprofit FreedomWorks, and the defendants are Barack H. Obama, who is “endowed with ultimate authority over each of the federal agencies relevant to this action,” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, NSA Director Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander, and FBI Director James Comey.

“Defendants’ inconsistent public statements, along with now-public FISC orders, lead Plaintiffs and class members to be concerned that Defendants may have collected or may be collecting, storing, retaining, and searching location information from the telephone metadata,” says the filing, noting that the metadata is only accessed by “authorized personnel with allegedly adequate and appropriate training.”

The NSA has said it only accesses the data for searches associated with suspicions about terrorist connections. “There is no judicial oversight or appeal of such decision prior to NSA acting on the decision,” the lawsuit continues. “The type and quantum of evidence needed to satsify the ‘reasonable articulable suspicion’ threshold to initiate a query by the NSA officials based on a seed is not publicly known.”

“At a minimum, Defendants violate Plaintiffs’ and class members’ Fourth Amendment rights each time they gather, store or search Plaintiffs’ and class members’ telephone metadata.”

The class is defined in the class-action suit as “all persons afforded protections under the Fourth Amendment who made or received a cellular/wireless or terrestrial/landline telephone call that originated and/or terminated in the United States after May 2006.”

“The class described above is so numerous that the joinder of all individual members in one action would be impracticable,” the suit adds, noting there are more than 300 million cellular subscribers and 100 million landline users in the country. “The exact size of the class and the identities of the individual members thereof are ascertainable through Defendant’s records.”

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All Comments   (5)
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Thank God for Rand Paul and the Tea Party. If it weren't for people and organizations like this, the GOP would be doing absolutely nothing except continuing to sit on their butts and suck their thumbs.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Obama has openly gone rogue ... he does and says whatever he wants with impunity; and Paul is right about this ... the administration is openly collecting data on citizens .... ... while giving us the middle finger and jetting to France to dine lavishly and lecture the French on income inequality and other Marxist and Stalinist claptrap ... he's AWOL.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Discovery in this case would take a thousand years, IF...the government that is stealing your liberty would provide the proof in a lawsuit that they are doing so. Are they going to do that?

Ummmm, I would

You aren't going to get any documents that prove the case. Either Obama is going to be gone by the time this ever reaches the Supreme Court...or the Supreme Court is going to be gone by the time this reaches President for Life Obama.

Interesting symbolic gesture. On the road to tyranny, it's not likely to be even a speed bump.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I agree, this seems weak tea in view of the unprecedented scope and audacity of Obama's words and actions these days. I like Paul but someone on the GOP side needs to ratchet up the stakes somehow, in the media and in front of the public. We're in the midst of a seething but silent Constitutional crisis.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It's a start, but they should be filing a suit regarding Obama's blatant disregard of the Constitution in his mandating/legislating via executive order.

Clear violation some 27 or so times and Congress has let him get away with it. It's no wonder he keeps stretching a little further each time he wants to do something. Give em and inch and they'll take a mile.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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