If there has ever been a time where America had to question the competency of our political leadership, it was two nights ago when the president and members of Congress allowed certain provisions of the Patriot Act to expire, substantially reducing our government’s ability to combat terrorism in a proactive and preemptive manner.
For four years the president and members of Congress knew this day was coming, and did little to nothing to insure that the questionable provisions of the Patriot Act were addressed and modified if necessary, to ensure that our law enforcement authorities had the appropriate tools they need to do their jobs.
In the aftermath of the attacks on America in September 2001, I supported the creation of the Patriot Act, and campaigned for it all over this country. I believed it was a necessary tool to fight our new, caustic enemy.
Fourteen later, I must admit that I am extremely concerned about our government’s ability to protect its citizens' freedoms and liberties as aggressively as it pursues justice, and how in the wrong hands, certain provisions of the Patriot Act could jeopardize innocent Americans.
That said, there are reforms to the act that could have guaranteed constitutional compliance while at the same time, ensuring our safety from terrorists.
The president did nothing to bring our political leadership together, while members of Congress waited until the last minutes to address this festering problem.
The result: There are now provisions of the Patriot Act that has lapsed, creating holes in our counterterrorism abilities, and once again, our enemy watches from afar, laughing at our incompetance.
Sen. Mike Lee was right when he said, “I don't think we should have allowed these provisions to expire . . . I think we should have, instead, reformed them." Unfortunately, there are only a few in Congress who feel the same way.
The rest are sleeping, or running for higher office, but one things for sure: There not doing the job they were elected to do. Let just hope they get their act together before its to late. We would hate to look back on this time and say, I told you so.
In 1986, Kerik joined the New York City Police Department where he earned the medal for valor. In 1991 he was transferred to the U.S. Justice Department's New York Drug Enforcement Task Force. In August 2000, Kerik served as police commissioner of New York. He led New York City through the devastating attacks on the World Trade Center on 9/11. After retiring from the NYPD, Kerik accepted a request by the White House to lead Iraq's provisional government's efforts to reconstitute the Iraqi Interior Ministry. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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