ACLU Cheers House Judiciary Committee for Supporting Bills Expanding Protections for Journalists and Reining in Warrantless Government Surveillance

The ACLU now calls on the full House of Representatives to pass the PRESS Act and the Fourth Amendment Is Not For Sale Act

July 19, 2023 12:00 pm

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WASHINGTON — The House Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to advance the Fourth Amendment Is Not For Sale Act, which would ban the government from purchasing Americans’ data from data brokers instead of obtaining the required warrant. The committee also voted to advance the PRESSAct, a bill that would provide strong protections to journalists and their sources. The American Civil Liberties Union has been an ardent supporter of both bills for many years.

On the PRESS Act, Jenna Leventoff, senior policy counsel at ACLU, issued the following statement:

“The PRESS Act creates critical protections for the fearless journalists who act as government watchdogs and keep all of us informed. While the majority of states already have shield laws in place that protect journalists from compelled disclosure of their sources, the PRESS Act provides uniform protections to journalists all across the country. We thank the House Judiciary Committee for protecting our constitutional right to a free press and urge the full House to swiftly pass this bipartisan legislation.”

On the Fourth Amendment Is Not For Sale Act, Kia Hamadanchy, senior federal policy counsel at ACLU, issued the following statement:

“Both Democrats and Republicans recognize that government agencies should not be allowed to circumvent core constitutional protections by purchasing access to data that they would otherwise need a warrant to obtain. The full House should now vote on this legislation, and it should be included in any reform effort involving reauthorization of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.”

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