Time to Amend the Florida Constitution to stop the NSA?
A column on World Net Daily has come to my attention. It deals with legislative proposals in the states of Missouri and Kansas changing their constitutions to protect the privacy, and liberty, of their citizens electronic communications and data. The following are excerpts from the column. Perhaps it is time for Florida to consider amending its constitution in the same way?
The National Security Agency may be able to spy on citizens by collecting data about their telephone calls and Internet usage, but at least two states are developing a strategy that would leave the data largely unusable without a warrant.
The newly revealed practices of the NSA to monitor all telephone calls made by American citizens could even be found in violation of the Missouri state constitution.
Several court cases that could eventually reach the U.S. Supreme Court have been filed since former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked information about the program.
Lawmakers in several states, however, aren’t waiting.
According to the Tenth Amendment Center, lawmakers in Missouri are proposing to amend their state constitution. Their plan would add “and electronic communications and data” to the provision that provides privacy and security for residents.
If changed by voters, it would read:
“That the people shall be secure in their persons, papers, homes [and], effects, and electronic communications and data, from unreasonable searches and seizures; and no warrant to search any place, or seize any person or thing, or access electronic data or communication, shall issue without describing the place to be searched, or the person or thing to be seized, or the data or communication to be accessed, as nearly as may be; nor without probable cause, supported by written oath or affirmation.”
The Joint Resolution, pending before the state Senate, proposes allowing Missouri voters to decide next November whether or not to amend their constitution.
In Kansas, Rep. Brett Hildabrand, R-Shawnee, pre filed a bill that would “ban all state agencies and local governments in the state from possessing data ‘held by a third-party in a system of record’ and would prohibit any such information from being ‘subject to discovery, subpoena or other means of legal compulsion for its release to any person or entity or be admissible in evidence in any judicial or administrative proceeding.’”
The access the data, under the bill, government would be required to obtain “express informed consent” or a warrant.