by Alex Marthews, National Chair and Derick Bellamy, Communications Chair
Over two years on from Edward Snowden’s leaks, the government’s mass surveillance of our private communications continues to increase, but it’s hard for most people to take the time to figure out the bills, policies and programs involved, and where their elected representatives stand.
In partnership with Fight for the Future, we have done the work for you. With the battle over CISA next up in Congress and the next election one year away, we need to know who is on our side, and who’s on Team Surveillance.
Our new surveillance scorecard launched today at www.decidethefuture.org, and grades lawmakers on their commitment to surveillance reform. An extension and update of a similar tool released last year, Decide The Future adds data from the current Congress, including the PATRIOT Act renewal fight, the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015 and much more.
The site is simple and easy to use, and will allow you to quickly see which politicians oppose mass surveillance, and which are working to expand the surveillance state. Just input your state and find your legislators’ voting records.
All 535 members of Congress are graded. 24 Senators got A grades, and 35 got Fs. In the House, 173 Representatives (40%) got A grades, and 10 (2.3%) got Fs. Looking at the states, legislators from Colorado, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Utah and Wisconsin are most supportive of surveillance reform, while legislators from Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois and Mississippi tend to oppose reform more.
We encourage you to use the site to call, email or tweet lawmakers to demand stronger surveillance reform, during the ongoing fight against CISA, during future legislative battles, and through the 2016 election.
As Congress prepares to make decisions affecting the nation’s privacy and safety, we should all be aware who is and isn’t fighting for our Fourth Amendment rights.