The National Security Agency’s ability to collect the phone records of millions of Americans in bulk expired late Sunday after the Senate failed to strike a deal before the midnight deadline.
However, that program, as well as several other post-9/11 counterterrorism measures, were likely to be revived in some form in the coming days after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. reluctantly embraced a House-passed bill that would extend the anti-terror provisions, while also remaking the bulk phone collections program.
Members of the GOP-controlled chamber had returned to Capitol Hill for a rare Sunday afternoon session in a last-ditch effort to extend the NSA’s authority to search for terror connections and to authorize two other programs under the Patriot Act, which took effect in the weeks after the 2001 attacks.
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