Register to Vote Now! Deadlines Approaching

Register to Vote Now! Deadlines Approaching

Week of September 20, 2004

Most states have a voter registration cut off date in early October. If you
want to participate in the Presidential election-now is the time to get
registered. Register right now by going to: https://ssl.capwiz.com/cair/e4/
(Click on "Register to Vote.")

HELP OTHERS REGISTER AND VOTE
1. Be sure everyone you know is registered to vote.
2. Starting today, make a list of registered voters that you know.
You'll want to contact them on election day and make sure they go vote.

MUSLIM SWING VOTERS?

From the Cincinnati Enquirer

"Could the ultimate swing vote in the ultimate swing state turn out to
be...Muslims? Every group this year claims to be the key swing group. But
Muslims have two statistics on their side: They vote, and polls show
there's been an extraordinary switch in allegiance since 2000."

ISSUE: THE PATRIOT ACT

Why is it important to you?
The USA Patriot Act was rammed through Congress on an emotional wave
following the September 11, 2001 attacks. It was sold as a tool against
terrorism but, as feared, it is being used in other ways. A report
published in Newsweek in December 2003 notes that two-thirds (2/3) of the
money laundering cases the government was pursuing using the Patriot Act
had no terror connection. Some provisions are necessary to combat
terrorism, such as those sections enabling the sharing of intelligence
among government agencies.

Many provisions are not necessary and are constitutionally suspect. Section
213, sneak and peek, allows law enforcement officials to go into your home
or office without informing you. Section 215 allows law enforcement to
order any person or entity to turn over documents. These documents can
include library records, business records, medical records, video rental
records, and even travel agency documents. This information can be demanded
without probable cause, generally a necessary ingredient for legal
investigations.

Some of the provisions of concern are set to expire at the end of 2005.

Where do they stand?

George W. Bush
President Bush wants to expand [the USA Patriot Act]. Bush supports the law
enthusiastically, mentioning it at every campaign stop, but says it doesn't
go far enough. Administration-backed measures to expand a few provisions,
including searches and seizures of personal and business records, are
pending in Congress. But Bush's plan to offer an ambitious Patriot II
sequel has been shelved, at least for now, because some fellow Republicans
see Big Brother in some of the search-and-surveillance rules in the current
law. Bush also has called or permanent extension of Patriot Act provisions
scheduled to expire at he end of 2005, including the "sneak and peek"
searches. (Source: The an Francisco Chronicle, September 20, 2004)

John Kerry
"Sen. John Kerry wants to narrow the USA Patriot Act. Kerry, who voted for
the Patriot Act, says he wants to retain most of it and modify - but not
repeal - the provisions he considers most prone to abuse. Those involve
library and bookstore searches, wiretaps and the delayed-notification
searches known as "sneak and peek."

"Kerry contends the biggest problem with the Patriot Act is its misuse by
Attorney General John Ashcroft. But the only actions of Ashcroft he cites
are unrelated to the Patriot Act, such as the attorney general's approval
of FBI surveillance of political gatherings." (Source: The San Francisco
Chronicle, September 20, 2004)

Ralph Nader
Mr. Nader supports the repeal of the Patriot Act, and an end to secret
detentions, arrests without charges, no access to attorneys and the use of
secret "evidence," military tribunals for civilians, non-combatant status
and the shredding of "probable cause" determinations. (Source:
Votenader.org)

MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Presidential Debates (tentative)
First Debate: September 30, 2004 in Coral Gables, Florida. Second
Debate: October 8, 2004 in St. Louis, Missouri.
Third Debate: October 13, 2004 in Tempe, Arizona.

Vice-Presidential Debate (tentative)
One Debate: October 5, 2004 in Cleveland, Ohio.

(Note: CAIR neither advocates the removal of nor endorses any specific
political candidate or political party.)

CONTACT: Corey P. Saylor, CAIR Government Affairs Director Tel: (202) 488-8787, (571) 278-4658, csaylor@cair-net.org


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