What started out as Senator Specter wanting to rein in the president's program has turned on its head and is now not just a legislative ratification of the program, but an expansion of warrantless wiretapping of Americans.
It would allow the NSA to turn its vacuum cleaners on even domestic phone calls and emails of citizens.
And -- they do all of this in Alice-in-Wonderland fashion by defining all kinds of categories of surveillance to be not surveillance.
The bill is basically saying that any time you are targeting a foreigner, even if you are collecting calls to us citizens, that's not surveillance.
And anytime you are targeting nobody, but scooping up vast quantities of calls, that's not surveillance.
"Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee acted as a rubber stamp for the administration's abuse of power," said Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. "Congress has a right and obligation to conduct meaningful oversight on the unlawful actions of the president. But instead of investigating lawbreaking, the Senate Judiciary Committee wants to make it legal. We urge the full Senate to reject any attempts to ratify this illegal program."