The nation’s biggest telecommunications companies, working closely with the White House, have mounted a secretive lobbying campaign to get Congress to quickly approve a measure wiping out all private lawsuits against them for assisting the U.S. intelligence community’s warrantless surveillance programs.
The campaign—which involves some of Washington's most prominent lobbying and law firms—has taken on new urgency in recent weeks because of fears that a U.S. appellate court in San Francisco is poised to rule that the lawsuits should be allowed to proceed.
If that happens, the telecom companies say, they may be forced to terminate their cooperation with the U.S. intelligence community—or risk potentially crippling damage awards for allegedly turning over personal information about their customers to the government without a judicial warrant. Read more...
As War and Piece puts it, U.S. intel agencies are in near panic mode over this, but Marcy Wheeler and Glenn Greenwald say they may be worrying over nothing as the Democrats are preparing to cave on this issue. President Bush is hell bent on letting telcos off the hook, contact your representatives in the House and Senate and let them know how you feel.