America First House Republicans, President Trump Oppose FISA Renewal

Only 19 Republican House members stood with President Donald Trump this week in opposition to the controversial renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Section 702, setting the stage for a heated debate on privacy and government surveillance powers. The vote came as Joe Biden and Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) endorsed the bill, titled the “Reforming Intelligence and Securing America Act (RISAA),” which was set for further debate as the week closed.

FISA’s Section 702 allows the U.S. government to collect and search vast amounts of digital communications without a warrant, targeting foreign nationals but incidentally sweeping up Americans’ communications. Critics argue this infringes on Fourth Amendment rights, which protect against unreasonable searches and seizures.

Rep. Ben Cline (R-VA) strongly criticized the renewal in comments to Newsmax on Thursday. “Section 702 has been abused countless times by FBI officials against American citizens, and it has to stop,” Cline said. He insists that he will only vote for a version of the bill that includes strict Fourth Amendment protections.

“We swear an oath to the Constitution. In fact, so does Christopher Wray. And we abide by our oaths; and he should, too. So we’re going to put that Fourth Amendment warrant requirement in; and, otherwise, we’re not going to renew section 702,” Cline added.

Critics like Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) and President Trump have been especially vocal about the inherent problems with FISA. Trump wrote this week on Truth Social that FISA had been used unlawfully against him and his associates by deep state intelligence agents operating on behalf of Democrats.

The House remains sharply divided on this issue, with some members advocating for a short-term extension to allow more time for debate and amendments. The Senate, on the other hand, is expected to pass whatever version the House sends over, making the House’s decision crucial in the trajectory of U.S. surveillance laws.

The Biden White House also strongly opposed a FISA amendment proposed by Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) requiring a warrant before any search of Americans’ communications.

In a Thursday evening post to X, formerly Twitter, Biggs wrote, “Of course Joe doesn’t support a warrant requirement. His weaponized federal police apparatus wouldn’t be able to spy on American citizens anymore. GET A WARRANT.”

The ongoing support from the Biden administration and neoconservative members of Congress for RISAA without substantial reform suggests a continuing trend toward expansive surveillance capabilities, often at the expense of individual privacy rights.


Previous articleIowa Enacts Strict Immigration Law Amid Federal Inaction
Next articleCartel Threats Silence Witness At Congressional Hearing