House Passes Patriot Act Extensions
Move to extend surveillance powers passes 275-144
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Suggested by SC23
Posted Feb 15, 2011 1:19 AM CST
Updated Feb 15, 2011 5:00 AM CST
'   (AP)

(Newser) – The House of Representatives has voted 275-144 to extend three key provisions of the Patriot Act until the end of the year. The measures—which would keep in place surveillance powers including counterterrorism officials' ability to conduct roving wiretap surveillance of targets—were slammed as "intrusive" and "unconstitutional" by opposing lawmakers, CNN reports.

"I believe the American people have a legitimate fear of out-of-control government," said conservative Republican Dana Rohrabacher, one of 27 GOP politicians who voted against the measure. "And yes, they have a legitimate fear of out-of-control prosecutors and out-of-control spy networks." The move follows a failed attempt to gain a two-thirds majority to save the law last week. The provisions will expire at the end of this month unless the Senate also agrees to an extension.