Cindy Hyde-Smith

Cindy Hyde-Smith

  • R-MS, Senator2018 – present
Cindy Hyde-Smith's photo

Lifetime Score 39%

2018: 54%
2019: 27%
2020: 30%

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Key Vote Description

Legislator Score / Vote

2020: 116th Congress 30%

  • 7: On the Amendment: Wyden-Daines Amendment to H.R. 6172Nay

    Key Vote 7: On the Amendment: Wyden-Daines Amendment to H.R. 6172

    This amendment would disallow the collection of internet search and browser history under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act. This information could still be acquired, but via other legal authorities that require a demonstration of probable cause by the government. This is largely codifying what is supposed to be current practice, but the government’s long history of reading the restrictions on their access to information extremely broadly justifies establishing a clear prohibition on acquiring such intrusive and revealing personal information. One need only check one’s own browser history to see how many details about a person’s life and that of their family can be inferred merely by acquiring that data.

    "Yea" votes scored.
  • 8: On the Amendment: Lee-Leahy Amendment to H.R. 6172Nay

    Key Vote 8: On the Amendment: Lee-Leahy Amendment to H.R. 6172

    This amendment greatly expands the instances under which amici curiae may be appointed to present some semblance of an adversarial process in Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) proceedings. Obviously, it would defeat the point of a legitimate surveillance order to have the target be able to represent themselves in front of the FISC, but the Lee/Leahy amendment insists that amici with expertise in privacy and civil liberties be present to ensure a fair proceeding in their stead in a number of instances. At their discretion, the FISC would be expected to appoint an amicus in FISA applications involving: new interpretations of law; First Amendment-protected activities; persons affiliated with political campaigns, religious organizations, or domestic new media; the use of new surveillance technologies; or other civil liberties concerns. This would greatly increase the likelihood that abuses of surveillance authorities, including both the NSA’s mass surveillance of Americans revealed by Edward Snowden and the FBI’s abuse of the same against President Trump’s campaign, would be discovered and flagged before they got out of hand. The government would also be explicitly required to disclose all possible exculpatory evidence that may undercut the need for a surveillance order to both the FISC and the amicus. The importance of such a requirement is highlighted by both the Carter Page incident during the Trump campaign, in which information about Page being an intelligence asset was withheld from the FISC. Recent revelations that the FBI also withheld exculpatory evidence in their investigation of General Flynn, as well, further calls that the disclosure of such information be explicitly demanded.

    "Yea" votes scored.
  • 9: On the Amendment: Paul Amendment to H.R. 6172Nay

    Key Vote 9: On the Amendment: Paul Amendment to H.R. 6172

    This amendment would require that a warrant be acquired under a non-FISA court in order to conduct surveillance on any US person and would disallow the use of information collected on US persons under either FISA or Executive Order 12333 from being used against them in court. Because it challenges the very structure of the surveillance authorities the government claims, this is considered a more ambitious reform than the others. However, it would bring surveillance authorities far closer into line with the express intent of the 4th Amendment - that all Americans receive due process against undue searches and seizures and that defendants have access to all information available to the government in the event of a court proceeding. The specific prohibition on the use of EO 12333 data against Americans is particularly noteworthy in light of Senator Burr’s recent assertion on the Senate floor that the executive branch could use it to continue Section 215 surveillance unabated in the absence of legislative permission.

    "Yea" votes scored.
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