Mark Pryor on Homeland Security

Last Updated : Nov 15, 2012

Summary

The PATRIOT Act

In 2005, Senator Pryor opposed one version of the PATRIOT Act's reauthorization saying that it takes focus off of preventing terrorism instead permitting government fishing expeditions that invade the privacy of all Americans. He noted that he was not opposed to the PATRIOT Act overall, but would agree to pass that version temporarily.

By March of the following year, Senator Pryor supported the version of the Act being passed in the Senate. He stated that the intelligence community must have the necessary tools at its disposal to protect us from the threat of terrorism and that the legislation in question help clarify what is legal and proper, and strikes a balance between prioritizing our safety without trampling individual rights.

 

Opposition to Conference Report

In December of 2005, Senator Pryor issued a press statement noting his opposition to a conference report version of the PATRIOT Act. He stated that the version in question did not allow for a balance in civil liberties and security. He noted that a version passed earlier that year did strike that balance.

 

The PATRIOT Act

In March of 2006, Senator Pryor issued a press statement noting his support for the PATRIOT Act reauthorization, stating that it was a necessary tool and that the reauthorization helps clarify what is legal and proper, and strikes a balance between prioritizing our safety without trampling individual rights.

 

Voting Record

Arrest and Detention of US Citizens - Final Passage

In November of 2011, the Senate voted on the conference report for the Defense appropriations act for 2012 - HR 1540. This final version of the legislation passed 86-13. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the legislation.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the legislation.

Arrest and Detention of US Citizens - Senate Passage

In November of 2011, the Senate voted on the Defense appropriations act for 2012 - S 1867. 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 93-7. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the legislation.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the legislation.

Arrest and Detention of US Citizens - Cloture

In November of 2011, the Senate voted on the Defense appropriations act for 2012 - S 1867. 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 cloture motion passed 88-12. Mark Pryor voted in favor of cloture to allow the bill to be considered.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of cloture to allow the bill to be considered.

Arrest and Detention of US Citizens - Udall Amendment to Repeal Provision

In November of 2011, the Senate voted on the Defense appropriations bill. This legislation contained provisions to allow for the arrest and indefinite detention of US citizens if they were merely suspected of allying with al-Qaida. Senator Udall offered an amendment to remove this specific section. The attempt failed 38-60. Mark Pryor voted against the Udall amendment to repeal the authorization for the arrest and indefinate detention of US citizens.

Mark Pryor voted against the Udall amendment to repeal the authorization for the arrest and indefinate detention of US citizens.

FISA Amendment Acts of 2007

In February of 2008, the Senate voted on the FISA Amendment Acts of 2007. The legislation passed the Senate with bipartisan support 68-29, but was never raised in the House. 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. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the FISA Amendment Acts of 2007.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the FISA Amendment Acts of 2007.

Restore Habeas Corpus

In September of 2009, the Senate voted on an amendment to restore habeas corpus rights to the prisoners a Guantanamo Bay. The measure received a majority of the votes, but not enough to pass. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the measure to restore habeas corpus rights to the prisoners.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the measure to restore habeas corpus rights to the prisoners.

Protect America Act of 2007

The Protect America Act of 2007 dealt with certain aspects of electronic surveillance and the overall war on terror. In the vote to pass the legislation, most Republicans supported the bill and only about 1/3 of the Democrats supported the legislation. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the Protect America Act of 2007.

Mark Pryor 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 Senate 65-34. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the Military Commission Act of 2006.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the Military Commission Act of 2006.

USA PATRIOT Reauthorization Act

In March of 2006, congress reauthorized the USA PATRIOT Act. Despite the fact that the PATRIOT Act had become a controversial topic, only 4 Senators opposed the act in the actual vote. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the USA PATRIOT Reauthorization Act.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the USA PATRIOT Reauthorization Act.

Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004

In October of 2004, congress passed the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004. The act was meant to reform national intelligence, and it created the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. The act passed the Senate with only 2 dissenting votes. Mark Pryor voted in favor of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004.

Mark Pryor voted in favor of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004.

 

Sponsored and Cosponsored Legislation

Session-110; Bill Number-S 185; Habeas Corpus Restoration Act of 2007 - Cosponsor

Repeals provisions of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 that eliminated the jurisdiction of any court to hear or consider applications for a writ of habeas corpus filed by aliens who have been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as enemy combatants (or who are awaiting such determination) and actions against the United States relating to the detention of such aliens and to military commissions (thus restoring habeas corpus rights existing prior to the enactment of such Act).Allows courts to hear or consider legal challenges to military commissions only as provided by the Code of Military Justice or by a habeas corpus proceeding.

Session-109; Bill Number-S 2082; Extending Provisions of the PATRIOT Act - Cosponsor

A bill to amend the USA PATRIOT ACT to extend the sunset of certain provisions of that Act and the lone wolf provision of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 to March 31, 2006.

Session-109; Bill Number-S 2167; Extending Portions of the USA PATRIOT Act - Cosponsor

Amending the USA PATRIOT Act to extend from December 31, 2005, to February 3, 2006, provisions of that Act and the "lone wolf" provision of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004.

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