"This is not a partisan issue, but an issue of civil liberties that conservatives, liberals, Tea Partiers, Democrats, and Republicans should be able to agree on."
MANASSAS, Va., June 21, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- ConservativeHQ.com Chairman Richard A. Viguerie issued the following statement calling on civil libertarians on the right and the left to demand that Congress rein-in the use of drones or unmanned aerial vehicles for domestic surveillance:
"The Big Brother regulatory state is a step closer to reality when the federal government allows and encourages the use of drones for domestic surveillance and law enforcement.
"This is not a partisan issue, but an issue of civil liberties that liberals, conservatives, Tea Partiers, Democrats, and Republicans should be able to agree on.
"Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky and Tea Party-backed freshman Congressman Austin Scott of Georgia have stepped-up to safeguard our Fourth Amendment protections by introducing the Preserving Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act of 2012, which is S. 3287 in the Senate and H.R. 5925 in the House.
"You would think that civil libertarians on the right and left would rally to join Senator Paul and Congressman Austin to ensure that the sky over your backyard is just as private as your backyard, but to date the bills have attracted but four cosponsors between them.
"Senators and congressmen who have yet to cosponsor S. 3287 or H.R. 5925 will undoubtedly plead they are too busy to review every bill that is introduced or that drones aren't their special area of expertise. This is how our liberties are lost, not in one great wave, but incrementally, because no one is paying attention to protecting them.
"Democrats and Republicans in Congress must step in and exercise their constitutional responsibilities to protect our Fourth Amendment privacy before 18,000 police departments get drone fever and unmanned aerial vehicles are hovering over every city and town, and bedroom, in America.
"The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution protects us from unreasonable searches and seizures by the government. We have launched an online petition to make sure that every American has the opportunity to let Congress know that they want their Fourth Amendment protections safeguarded from this new and troubling technological threat to our civil liberties."
The petition to "Stop Big Brother's Spies in the Skies" is online at http://tinyurl.com/cf5aql5
NOTE TO EDITORS: Richard A. Viguerie pioneered political direct mail and has been called "one of the creators of the modern conservative movement" (The Nation) and one of the "conservatives of the century" (Washington Times).