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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 21, 2005

Schumer, Sununu And Leahy Release Letter In Which A Majority Of Senate Urges 3-Month Extension Of Patriot Act

U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY), John Sununu (R-NH), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) released a letter today signed by a majority of the U.S. Senate urging Majority Leader Bill Frist to extend PATRIOT Act by three months. A majority of Senators, 52 at press time, have signed the letter in support of a three-month extension in order to provide more time for the Senate to agree on a conference report to reauthorize the Act. The letter text and signatories are below:

December 20, 2005

The Honorable William H. Frist, MD
United States Senate Majority Leader
Room S-230, The Capitol
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Mr. Majority Leader,

We are writing to let you know of our support of S. 2082, bi-partisan legislation introduced by Senators Sununu and Leahy, that would provide a three month extension of the expiring provisions of the PATRIOT Act and the lone wolf provision of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorist Prevention Act in the event the Senate is unable to gain agreement on a conference report to reauthorize these provisions.

We sincerely hope that House and Senate negotiators will reach agreement this week on a reauthorization bill that balances the needs of law enforcement with civil liberty protections for innocent Americans. However, if such an agreement cannot be reached before both Houses adjourn this week, federal law enforcement officials should continue to have use of the investigative tools of the PATRIOT Act. A three month extension of the expiring provisions of the PATRIOT Act and the lone wolf provision of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorist Prevention Act will accomplish this goal.

As you, President Bush, Attorney General Gonzales and others have emphatically noted in recent days, the PATRIOT Act provides important tools for federal law enforcement officials to investigate and prevent terrorist attacks. Therefore, these law enforcement tools should remain in place should our work on final reauthorization legislation take us into the New Year.

Sincerely,

So far, signatories to the Sununu-Schumer-Leahy letter include 8 Republicans and all Democrats except for Sen. Feingold, who has said he would vote with Democrats, but declined to sign the letter:


1. Sen. Chafee, Lincoln (R-RI)
2. Sen. Collins, Susan (R-ME)
3. Sen. Craig, Larry (R-ID)
4. Sen. Crapo, Mike (R-ID)
5. Sen. Hagel, Chuck (R-NE)
6. Sen. Murkowski, Lisa (R-AK)
7. Sen. Snowe, Olympia (R-ME)
8. Sen. Sununu, John (R-NH)
9. Sen. Akaka, Daniel (D-HI)
10. Sen. Baucus, Max (D-MT)
11. Sen. Bayh, Evan (D-IN)
12. Sen. Biden, Joseph (D-DE)
13. Sen. Bingaman, Jeff (D-NM)
14. Sen. Boxer, Barbara (D-CA)
15. Sen. Byrd, Robert (D-WV)
16. Sen. Cantwell, Maria (D-WA)
17. Sen. Carper, Thomas (D-DE)
18. Sen. Clinton, Hillary (D-NY)
19. Sen. Conrad, Kent (D-ND)
20. Sen. Corzine, Jon (D-NJ)
21. Sen. Dayton, Mark (D-MN)
22. Sen. Dodd, Christopher (D-CT)
23. Sen. Dorgan, Byron (D-ND)
24. Sen. Durbin, Richard (D-IL)
25. Sen. Feinstein, Dianne (D-CA)
26. Sen. Harkin, Tom (D-IA)
27. Sen. Inouye, Daniel (D-HI)
28. Sen. Jeffords, Jim (I-VT)
29. Sen. Johnson, Tim (D-SD)
30. Sen. Kennedy, Edward (D-MA)
31. Sen. Kerry, John (D-MA)
32. Sen. Kohl, Herbert (D-WI)
33. Sen. Landrieu, Mary (D-LA)
34. Sen. Lautenberg, Frank (D-NJ)
35. Sen. Leahy, Patrick (D-VT)
36. Sen. Levin, Carl (D-MI)
37. Sen. Lieberman, Joseph (D-CT)
38. Sen. Lincoln, Blanche (D-AR)
39. Sen. Mikulski, Barbara (D-MD)
40. Sen. Murray, Patty (D-WA)
41. Sen. Nelson, Ben (D-NE)
42. Sen. Nelson, Bill (D-FL)
43. Sen. Obama, Barack (D-IL)
44. Sen. Pryor, Mark (D-AR)
45. Sen. Reed, Jack (D-RI)
46. Sen. Reid, Harry (D-NV)
47. Sen. Rockefeller, John (D-WV)
48. Sen. Salazar, Ken (D-CO)
49. Sen. Sarbanes, Paul (D-MD)
50. Sen. Schumer, Charles (D-NY)
51. Sen. Stabenow, Debbie (D-MI)
52. Sen. Wyden, Ron (D-OR
)

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