A tea party message in Patriot Act defeat: We’re about more than taxes

I would love to see The Patriot Act become a horror of the past.  It is one of the single greatest erosion of liberty since the fiat economy was put into place.  Seeing these headlines really makes me feel a lot better about the outlook of the American future.

Several tea party freshmen in the House were part of a successful bid to defeat an extension of the Patriot Act. It shows how the tea party could challenge GOP unity on issues beyond the budget – from civil liberties to free trade.

The role of eight House newcomers, some of them with links to the tea party, in defeating an extension to the Patriot Act Tuesday is a first real hint that the grass-roots movement can complicate GOP unity on issues beyond the budget, such as immigration and free trade.

The extension, which would have allowed, among other things, the FBI to check citizens’ library records as part of terror investigations, failed for several reasons. Some Republicans were angry at their own leadership’s attempt to fast-track the bill. But the vote also highlights how elements of the GOP at odds with party orthodoxy have been augmented and emboldened by the tea party success last November.

On Tuesday, for example, the new, more conservative House also pulled from the floor a bill that extended trade benefits to several South American countries and voted to continue a program that helps workers who lose jobs to offshoring retrain for new ones.

The moves point to a House Republican leadership still struggling to come to grips with its own rank and file – and the influence of the tea party is a part of that, say experts.

“Anybody who listened to tea party people around the country has no excuse for being surprised that tea party Republicans voted against” the Patriot Act, says Charles Franklin, a political scientist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. “How it will now play out is a little bit unclear, but the budget, the debt extension, the South Korean trade agreement might be other issues, and also where these kinds of liberty issues come up where liberty-oriented conservatives don’t see it as a political peg but they really do oppose government intrusion into private lives.”

More at Source

I really do have strong libertarian leanings, and the Tea Party was originally a libertarian movement.  I was very sad to see the GOP usurp the Tea movement, and had really given up on it altogether (as it seems to have become “GOP Lite”).  But this.  This is some change I can believe in.

It seems that libertarian values are surging among The People.  And, hopefully, the crooks in DC have taken notice enough to seek a little change to prolong their careers.  Whatever the reason, if the Patriot Act goes away, it is a win for freedom, and the American people.

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