The House today narrowly defeated an amendment to a defense spending package that would have repealed authorization for the National Security Agency’s dragnet collection of phone-call metadata in the United States.
The amendment to the roughly $600 billion Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2014 would have ended authority for the once-secret spy program the White House insists is necessary to protect national security.
The amendment (.pdf), one of dozens considered, was proposed by Rep. Justin Amash (R-Michigan). “The government collects the phone records without suspicion of every single American of the United States,” he said during heated debate on the measure.
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Michigan), in urging a no vote, said “Passing this amendment takes us back to September 10.”