Vice-President Cheney Talks About the Future, Part 4
WASHINGTON D.C. — 4. The Vice-President was unapologetic about the NSA warrantless surveillance program. And he was very clear on one factual point. Only calls where one end was outside of the United States were monitored. This, I believe, is the substantive fact that will make this a non-issue.
The fourth amendment bars “unreasonable searches and seizures”. A different standard of reasonableness — in the law and in people’s minds — applies to what crosses national borders than to what stays within the borders. A reasonable search of person who is crossing the border from Mexico or Canada would not be considered a reasonable search of someone traveling between Warwick and East Greenwich. The same distinction can be applied to electronic communication.
If the Democrats stick with their “the war in Iraq was a mistake” line, but aggressively push the idea that warrantless surveillance of parties outside of the United States should be forbidden, then they are arguing that the United States shouldn’t be active in promoting the rights of average people trapped under totalitarian governments trying to go about normal lives, but should actively apply the protections of the American Constitution to non-citizens outside of the United who may be plotting terrorists acts.
Isn’t this an example of the famed Democratic incoherence on foreign policy?