Last week, we told you of a federal appeals court decision that said the National Security Agency’s bulk telephone metadata spying could continue because the program Edward Snowden revealed was approved by Congress.
Judge Richard Leon
Today, we bring more judicial follies about the NSA phone spying program. US District Judge Richard Leon of the District of Columbia ruled Monday that a challenge to the program “will likely succeed in showing that the Program is indeed an unreasonable search under the Fourth Amendment.” But in that decision, the judge said the program, because of the legal posture of the lawsuit, could continue unabated—but with a caveat. The authorities have to stop scooping up the telephone metadata on J.J. Little, a Los Angeles trial lawyer, and his boutique firm of a handful of lawyers now at the center of the case that is as old as the Snowden disclosure.
All of which means that, nearly 2.5 years following Snowden’s revelation, a handful of Americans have beaten the NSA’s spy program. But it would be foolhardy to suggest that it’s anything close to a victory. That’s because the program, which has successfully beaten multiple court challenges, has been spying on hundreds of millions of people, has been modified by Congress, and will expire in its original form on November 29.
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