Patriots Act

Ben Frey

Overview

Patriots act was an act that was created a week after 9/11 to help the US protect against potential future terrorist attacks. Here is how the Patriots act got formed after 9/11 including the reason who formed it and why they formed it.

Step One Recognizing the Problem/Setting the Agenda

The main issue that brought everyone to realize that we needed the Patriot Act was the lack of the capabilities of law enforcement to be able to stop terrorist attacks. The reason we realized that our law enforcement lacked such capabilities was because of 9/11 which was when 19 militants who were part of the extremist group AL-Qaeda hijacked four plans and carried out suicide attacks against places in the US. This event fully brought our realization to how weak our protection was against terrorist attack and how we needed something to help protect us better. The main person behind the patriot act was president Bush. Almost instantly after 9/11 he had the idea for the Patriots Act and almost everyone agreed with him on it.

Step Two Formulating the Policy

After 9/11 George Bush declared war on terror, and senators from both parties started working on creating a law to give powers to law enforcement that would help them investigate, and prevent terrorism. The man who ended up writing the Patriot Act was Jim Sensenbrenner. Everyone knew that this act was very important so it was created quickly around a week after 9/11.

Step Three Adopting the Policy

One week after 9/11 the legislation was submitted, and it almost instantly went through both houses with approval, and it would be considered a regulatory policy. It went through the senate with basically no debate at all, and it passed through the house just as easily with a 357-66 vote which is over 84% of the house. Once again a main player in getting the bill pass was President Bush. As well as him was most of the house as well as senate who as said earlier passed the bill without thought. While signing the bill President Bush said "We're dealing with terrorists who operate by highly sophisticated methods and technologies, some of which were not even available when our existing laws were written. The bill before me takes account of the new realities and dangers posed by modern terrorists." There were so many supporting this bill the only ones that actually stood out were ones who were opposing it.
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Step Four Implementing the Policy

The patriots act does for things in particular that helps law enforcement prevent terrorism. First, it allows investigators to use tools that have been available for organized crime and drug trafficking investigations. These tools improve their surveillance for suspected terrorists. They also don’t have to let someone know that a warrant has been executed so that they can find information that could potentially be destroyed if they knew the warrant was issued. Second it allows government agencies to share information about specific cases. Third they are allowed to use up to date technology to investigate terrorists who use advanced ways of communicating. They are allowed to monitor the activity of computer hackers as if they were trespassers on private properties.They also can in some cases use a search warrant beyond the boundaries of where the search warrant was obtained. Fourth it has increased the penalties of people who have committed terrorists crime, and specifically prohibits people from allowing terrorists to live with them. Once again the main player was president bush for he was the one who pushed the act one week after the attack on 9/11 as well as congress who passed the bill almost instantly as stated earlier.
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Step Five Evaluating the Policy

The Patriot Act has helped greatly in improving the law enforcements powers to identify and stop acts of terrorism. Supporters of the act helps law enforcement agencies be able to obtain the mandatory court permissions for carrying out the necessary terrorism-related investigations. A common complaint is that it gives authorities have free reign which is argued that they do not have free reign and they have to include in their surveillance activities. The main players in this are the people who are in law enforcement. The main law enforcement who are involved in the patriot act is the F.B.I who had a lot of the powers stated above included to what they do so they can defend against terrorism. They are the ones doing all the investigating and preventing all the terrorism to keep US safe and proving this act worth.
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Citations

Staff, History.com. "9/11 ATTACKS." History.com. A E Networks, 1 Jan. 2010. Web. 14 Nov. 2014.
107th U.S. Congress. "USA Patriot Act." Terrorism: Essential Primary Sources. Ed. K. Lee Lerner and Brenda Wilmoth Lerner. Detroit: Gale, 2006. 391-397. Student Resources in Context. Web. 17 Nov. 2014.
"USA Patriot Act." Gale Encyclopedia of Everyday Law. Ed. Jeffrey Wilson. 2nd ed. Vol. 1. Detroit: Gale, 2006. 265-269. Student Resources in Context. Web. 17 Nov. 2014.