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Tenn. senate bill would prohibit state from cooperating with NSA

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Tennessee State Sen. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, introduced a bill today that would prohibit the state from supporting the "federal collection of electronic data or metadata without a warrant," Examiner has learned.

Campfield told Examiner that his goal is to "stop an out of control NSA from warrant less wire tapping with TN support."

SB 1849, better known as the Fourth Amendment Protection Act, would prohibit the state from having anything to do with the "collection of electronic data or metadata of any person" without a warrant. And Campfield isn't talking about those FISC (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court) warrants that encompass everyone, but instead, a warrant that "particularly describes the person, place and thing to be searched or seized," according to the bill.

The bill states that any agent or employee of Tennessee who violates the law "shall be deemed to have resigned the public commission or employment which the person may possess, the person's office shall be deemed vacant, and the person shall be forever thereafter ineligible to any public office of trust or honor under the laws of this state."

The bill would not only apply to the government, but to certain businesses as well:

Any person or business that provides services to or on behalf of this state
found to violate the prohibitions of Section 4 of this act shall not have any current
contract renewed and shall not be eligible to enter into any future contract to act on
behalf of, or provide services to, this state or any political subdivision of this state.

A recent USA Today poll showed that 70 percent of Americans believe they "shouldn't have to give up privacy and freedom in order to be safe from terrorism." It seems safe to say that Campfield's bill is a step in the right direction.

Disclosure: I ran against Campfield in 2006 and lost.

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