The revelations about the NSA spying program have set off a firestorm of partisan finger-pointing (such as this from late last week). The reality, though, isn’t terribly complex. Both parties are responsible for selling your privacy down the river with these sorts of programs. There have been five key votes since 2001 that have been responsible for these programs.
The pattern shows that it doesn’t matter who’s in charge of the Presidency or Congress. Washington D.C. will vote to take away your privacy, while fighting to make more and more of their actions secret. The solution to this issue can’t be solved by switching which party is in charge — but rather by a sustained effort to keep pressure on both parties to do the right thing. We must remain vigilant.
Below is a chart that shows the bipartisan failure on this issue, including votes by Minnesota’s Congressional delegation. Click on the chart to see a larger version.
Data sourced from THOMAS.gov