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Friday, January 19, 2007

Bush Claims Right To Open Your Mail

President Bush asserted the federal government's right to open U.S. mail without a warrant.

Bush asserted the right in a little-noticed signing statement the White House issued in December when Bush signed into law the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act.

"The executive branch shall construe subsection 404(c) of title 39, as enacted by subsection 1010(e) of the Act, which provides for opening of an item of a class of mail otherwise sealed against inspection, in a manner consistent, to the maximum extent permissible, with the need to conduct searches in exigent circumstances, such as to protect human life and safety against hazardous materials, and the need for physical searches specifically authorized by law for foreign intelligence collection," the Bush statement says.

The Bush statement was originally reported on the Care2 social network.

President Bush has been criticized for civil liberties violations in pursuit of terrorists.

Bush this week decided not to renew a warrantless wiretap, or domestic spying, program after months of criticism.

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