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VOL. 36 | NO. 51 | Friday, December 21, 2012

Surveillance authority expiring unless Senate acts

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The government's authority to intercept electronic communications of foreign spies and terrorist targets will expire at year's end, unless the Senate extends a key surveillance law. A bipartisan group of senators is demanding changes.

In a case in which national security bumps up against privacy, more than a dozen senators say they're concerned that conversations and emails of Americans are swept up in the monitoring of foreigners without protection of a court warrant.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid struggled Thursday to get the five-year extension of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act before the Senate. However, those questioning the law blocked any action until they could get votes on their proposals to modify the bill.