The Supreme Court ruled today in Clapper v. Amnesty Int'l USA that a constitutional challenge to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) cannot go forward. A group of attorneys and journalists alleged that the U.S. government could be intercepting their communications with their foreign contacts, in violation of the Fourth Amendment. In a divided 5-4 decision, Justice Alito wrote that the group's alleged injuries were too speculative to be considered. Justice Breyer, joined by Justices Ginsburg, Kagan, and Sotomayor, dissented and said that the Court's "certainly impending" standard was inconsistent with prior decisions. Justice Breyer also cited EPIC's "friend of the court" brief which described the extraordinary capacity of the NSA to capture private communications. For more information, see EPIC: Clapper v. Amnesty Int'l USA and EPIC: FISA.
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by Ryan Calo, A. Michael Froomkin,