Todd Akin on Homeland Security

Last Updated : Oct 22, 2012

Summary

Congressman Akin is a strong supporter of the need for the Department of Homeland Security and tools such as the PATRIOT Act, the Protect America Act, and similar laws to provide for the ability of the government to monitor terrorosts and citizens at home and abroad.

Creation of the Department

In 2002, Congressman Akin supported the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. He stated that the move was a much needed and overdue piece of legislation intended to fulfill the fundamental purpose of the federal government which was to provide for the security of Americans.

FISA

In 2007, Congressman Akin supported the need to fix FISA to allow the U.S. intelligence community to monitor in a timely fashion foreign communications by terrorists who may be plotting attacks in the United States. He stated that the US needed to take warnings of increased terrorist coordination seriously and we should allow those charged with thwarting such attacks the ability to do their job. He added that the US knows of potential terror cells abroad and have in the past monitored their communication, but currently technicalities in the law are hamstringing our intelligence capability and degrading our ability to defend ourselves.

Later that year, Congressman Akin noted a captured soldier and efforts being made to recover him as a tradgedy of our own making in that we were preventing ourselves from using necessary tools to find him.

 

Creation of the Department

In November of 2002, Congressman Akin released a press statement noting his support for the creation of the Department of Homeland Security.

 

Revisiting FISA

In July of 2007, Congressman Akin released a press statement noting his support for legislation to track terrorist by revisiting FISA.

 

A Tradgedy of Our Own Making

On October 17, 2007 Congressman Akin spoke on the House floor about the FISA regulations and how restrictions caused the military to be unable to capture terrorists.

 

FISA

On October 23, 2007 Congressman Akin carried out a conversation with several other Congressman on the House floor about the need to allow the government to continue wiretaps and other things without FISA restrictions.

 

Intelligence Gathering Disarmed

In January of 2008, Congressman Akin spoke on the House floor about intelligence gathering and stated that the act of intelligence gathering had been disarmed in the US.

 

The Protect America Act

In February of 2008, Congressman Akin released a press statement noting his support for the Protect America Act.

 

Voting Record

Arrest and Detention of US Citizens

In December of 2011, the House voted on the Defense appropriations act for 2012 - HR 1540. Part of that legislation was a provision to express the authorization of the military to arrest and indefinitely detain US citizens. The only requirement for this was that the person be suspected of allying with al-Qaida. The legislation passed 283-136. Todd Akin voted in favor of the legislation.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the legislation.

Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2010

In October of 2010, the House voted on a funding bill for Homeland Security. Buried within that legislation was language to prevent any funds from being used to transfer detainees from Guantanamo Bay to the US or to their home nation. Also in that funding bill was a definition that made photos taken of prisoners at Guantanamo bay classified and unable to be released. The act passed the House 258-163. Todd Akin voted in favor of the act which prevented the movement of prisoners from Gitmo and classified photos of detainees.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the act which prevented the movement of prisoners from Gitmo and classified photos of detainees.

FISA Amendment Acts of 2008

In June of 2008, the House voted on the FISA Amendment Acts of 2008. The legislation passed the House with bipartisan support 293-129, but was never raised in the Senate. The legislation primarily contained provisions to allow for the monitoring of terrorists overseas that were a continuation of expired provisions in the Protect America Act. It also granted immunity to telecommunications companies against their customers for giving information to the government without a warrant. Todd Akin voted in favor of the FISA Amendment Acts of 2008.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the FISA Amendment Acts of 2008.

Protect America Act of 2007

The Protect America Act of 2007 was a bill that sought to allow electronic surveillance of people reasonable believed to be outside of the United States. The bill lists the requirements for initiating surveillance and gives it a 1 year limitation. The bill passed in the House in a 227-183 vote. Todd Akin voted in favor of the Protect America Act of 2007.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the Protect America Act of 2007.

Military Commission Act of 2006

The Military Commissions Act passed in response to a supreme court ruling which stated that stated that military tribunals established by the Bush administrations did not align with the UCMJ. The Act defined unlawful enemy combatants and allowed for the military tribunals to be held. It passed the House 250-170. Todd Akin voted in favor of the Military Commission Act of 2006.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the Military Commission Act of 2006.

Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act

In September of 2006, Congress passed the Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act by a margin of 232-191. Specifically, the legislation made FISAs definition of electronic surveillance technology-neutral in terms of wire and radio communications, Updated the definition of who is covered under FISA, provided the President with the authority to collect electronic surveillance to acquire foreign intelligence information without a court order for up to 90 days after an armed attack or a terrorist attack, and strengthened congressional oversight of the surveillance program through notification and reporting requirements. Todd Akin voted in favor of the Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the Electronic Surveillance Modernization Act.

USA PATRIOT Act Additional Reauthorizing Amendments Act of 2006

The USA PATRIOT Act Additional Reauthorizing Amendments Act of 2006 was a bill that sought to allow electronic surveillance of people reasonable believed to be outside of the United States. The bill lists the requirements for initiating surveillance and gives it a 1 year limitation. The bill passed in the House in a 227-183 vote. Todd Akin voted in favor of reauthorizing the PATRIOT Act.

Todd Akin voted in favor of reauthorizing the PATRIOT Act.

The Homeland Security Act of 2002

In July 2002, the House passed the Homeland Security Act of 2002. Among other things, the act created the Department of Homeland Security, and set forth the jurisdiction of that department. In the vote, almost all Republicans supported the legislation and a moderate percentage of Democrats supported it. Todd Akin voted in favor of the Homeland Security Act of 2002.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the Homeland Security Act of 2002.

The Patriot Act

In October of 2001, Congress passed the USA PATRIOT Act. Although the act passed the senate with moderate support from Democrats, it has become one of the more divisive pieces of legislation. This is partly due to the expansion of governmental wiretapping privileges. Todd Akin voted in favor of the PATRIOT Act.

Todd Akin voted in favor of the PATRIOT Act.

 

Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-111; Bill Number-H R 2875; Detainee Photographic Records Protection Act of 2009 - Cosponsor

To provide that certain photographic records relating to the treatment of any individual engaged, captured, or detained after September 11, 2001, by the Armed Forces of the United States in operations outside the United States shall not be subject to disclosure under section 552 of title 5, United States Code (commonly referred to as the Freedom of Information Act).

Session-111; Bill Number-H R 4490; Detainee Transfer and Release Security Act of 2010 - Cosponsor

Prohibits the President from releasing or transferring an individual currently detained at Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to the custody of the individual's country of origin or to a third country unless the President certifies to Congress that: (1) such country is not a designated state sponsor of terrorism; (2) such country's government can secure and exercise control over all of its territory; (3) no portion of such country's territory serves as a safe haven for terrorists or insurgent groups, particularly al Qaeda; and (4) there is no confirmed case of any individual who had been detained at Guantanamo who reengaged in terrorist activities subsequent to being transferred or released to such country.

Session-110; Bill Number-H R 1399; Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

To provide for the implementation of the recommendations of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States.

Session-110; Bill Number-H R 3138; Resolution Redefining Electronic Surveillance - Cosponsor

Amends the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA) to redefine "electronic surveillance" as: (1) the installation or use of an electronic, mechanical, or other surveillance device for acquiring information by intentionally directing surveillance at a particular person believed to be in the United States when that person has a reasonable expectation of privacy and a warrant would be required for law enforcement purposes; or (2) the intentional acquisition of the contents of any communication when that person has a reasonable expectation of privacy and a warrant would be required for law enforcement purposes, if both the sender and all intended recipients are believed to be in the United States.

User Comments