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House votes to reauthorize FISA, without the warrant requirement amendment

Cath Virginia / The Verge | Photos from Getty Images

After three failed attempts and a heated floor debate, the House voted on Friday to reauthorize a controversial program that lets US intelligence agencies spy on foreign communications without a warrant. The bill ultimately passed 273–147.

Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act is scheduled by statute to expire on April 19th, though the FISA court recently granted a government request that would have authorized the program for another year without congressional approval.

The battle over the amendments to the bill revealed some unexpected alliances in the House over privacy issues. A bipartisan coalition of progressives and members of the far-right Freedom Caucus rallied together behind an amendment to impose a warrant…

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