Maine joins Alaska, Vermont, Hawaii, and hundreds of cities: In a move indicative of ongoing nationwide disquiet over the state of civil liberties since 9/11, Maine today became the fourth state to pass a resolution asking Congress to revisit the Patriot Act and other civil liberties infringements...The Maine state senate passed the resolution today by a vote of 18 to 15, with one Republican voting with 17 Democrats. The House of Representatives approved the measure on Friday after defeating a move to indefinitely postpone consideration of the measure by a vote of 51 to 73. In that vote, three Republicans crossed the aisle, and one - Rep. David Trahan of Waldoboro - delivered a forceful floor statement in favor of the resolution. The Maine resolution follows state-wide measures in Vermont, Alaska and Hawaii. Statehouses in New Mexico and several other states have considered similar pieces of legislation. Most urge the U.S. Congress to revisit the USA Patriot Act, passed in haste a mere eight weeks after the attacks, and try to prevent local authorities from engaging in racial profiling and other civil liberties abuses. ...The Maine resolution puts the tally of communities that have passed such resolutions at 275, encompassing almost 50 million Americans in 38 states..."As our polling has shown, when people, especially on the right, are informed about these issues, they get concerned," said Charlie Mitchell, an ACLU legislative counsel. "Maine’s vote is a reflection of that dynamic."


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