Thinking back to how big of a scandal it was when President Obama signed the USA Freedom Act in 2015, and more generally how much flak Obama received with his handling of the 2013 surveillance disclosures related to mass surveillance being carried out by the U.S. intelligence community, have any 2020 Democratic primary candidates openly opposed these policies and stated they would work to overturn them?
Do any 2020 Democratic primary candidates support repealing the PATRIOT Act and eliminating mass surveillance in the United States?
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The list of candidates below includes only those, as of October 16, 2019, who indicated opposition to the PATRIOT Act or took a position against mass surveillance. Since this list was published, Cory Booker has exited and Michael Bloomberg has entered the Democratic primary race.
How the 2020 Presidential candidates stack up on the surveillance state, October 16, 2019.
Over her years in Congress, Gabbard has paid close attention to surveillance issues. She has voted consistently and frequently in favor of surveillance reform, including co-sponsoring the Surveillance State Repeal Act, which would get rid of the PATRIOT Act and FISA Amendments Act entirely, and require warrants for collection of foreign surveillance data under Executive Order 12333.
Bernie Sanders has co-sponsored legislation on Capitol Hill to outlaw mass surveillance (the Intelligence Oversight and Surveillance Reform Act). He has been a consistent voice in favor of reining in surveillance powers, voting against reauthorization of the PATRIOT Act, against CISA, against efforts to weaken the USA FREEDOM Act, and against cloture on a bill extending Section 702 mass surveillance powers.
Though surveillance issues have not been core to Warren’s candidacies for either Senate or President, she has developed an unexpectedly strong voting record on NSA reform. She has voted against reauthorization of the PATRIOT Act, against CISA, against efforts to weaken the USA FREEDOM Act, and against cloture on a bill extending Section 702 mass surveillance powers.
As a member of the House of Representatives and member of the Fourth Amendment Caucus, he helped to introduce the USA RIGHTS Act, tried to get warrantless surveillance defunded via amendment, voted against the reauthorization of Section 702 mass surveillance powers, advocated against FBI backdoor searches and opposed the use of drone surveillance at the border.
He voted in favor of various amendments to improve the USA FREEDOM Act, against CISA, and against cloture on a bill extending Section 702 mass surveillance powers.