President Trump Has One Day to Veto FEPA Before It Becomes Law

Education Secretary Betsy DeVoss and President Donald Trump at St. Andrew Catholic School in Orlando, FL

If President Donald Trump does not veto The Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA) (H.R. 4174) (S 2046) by tomorrow, Saturday, January 12, it becomes law.

Jane Robbins in 2017 provided a great description of what this bill will do. FEPA, she wrote, “encourages all federal agencies to share the data they maintain on American citizens and to make that data available for ‘research’ by outside interests. All this would be done according to rules set by each agency and without the knowledge or consent of the citizens whose data would be disclosed and scrutinized.”

“In a free society, the government is subordinate to the citizen. If it wants to use his data for something he didn’t agree to, it should first obtain his consent. FEPA operates according to the contrary principle – that government is entitled to do whatever it wants with a citizen’s data and shouldn’t be hindered by his objection,” Robbins stated.

What data could that be? Robbins said to consider all of the data collected by the U.S. Department of Education on a FAFSA form for instance which you can see below:

1. Student’s Last Name:
2. Student’s First Name:
3. Student’s Middle Initial:
4. Student’s Permanent Mailing Address:
5. Student’s Permanent City:
6. Student’s Permanent State:
7. Student’s Permanent ZIP Code:
8. Student’s Social Security Number:
9. Student’s Date of Birth:
10. Student’s Telephone Number:
11. Student’s Driver’s License Number:
12. Student’s Driver’s License State:
13. Student’s E-mail Address:
14. Student’s Citizenship Status:
15. Student’s Alien Registration Number:
16. Student’s Marital Status:
17. Student’s Marital Status Date:
18. Student’s State of Legal Residence:
19. Was Student a Legal Resident Before January 1, 2012?
20. Student’s Legal Residence Date:
21. Is the Student Male or Female?
22. Register Student With Selective Service System?
23. Drug Conviction Affecting Eligibility?
24. Parent 1 Educational Level:
25. Parent 2 Educational Level:
26. High School or Equivalent Completed?
27a. Student’s High School Name:
27b. Student’s High School City:
27c. Student’s High School State:
28. First Bachelor’s Degree before 2017-2018 School Year?
29. Student’s Grade Level in College in 2017-2018:
30. Type of Degree/Certificate:
31. Interested in Work-study?
32. Student Filed 2015 Income Tax Return?
33. Student’s Type of 2015 Tax Form Used:
34. Student’s 2015 Tax Return Filing Status:
35. Student Eligible to File a 1040A or 1040EZ?
36. Student’s 2015 Adjusted Gross Income:
37. Student’s 2015 U.S. Income Tax Paid:
38. Student’s 2015 Exemptions Claimed:
39. Student’s 2015 Income Earned from Work:
40. Spouse’s 2015 Income Earned from Work:
41. Student’s Total of Cash, Savings, and Checking Accounts:
42. Student’s Net Worth of Current Investments:
43. Student’s Net Worth of Businesses/Investment Farms:
44a. Student’s Education Credits:
44b. Student’s Child Support Paid:
44c. Student’s Taxable Earnings from Need-Based Employment Programs:
44d. Student’s College Grant and Scholarship Aid Reported in AGI:
44e. Student’s Taxable Combat Pay Reported in AGI:
44f. Student’s Cooperative Education Earnings:
45a. Student’s Payments to Tax-Deferred Pensions & Retirement Savings:
45b. Student’s Deductible Payments to IRA/Keogh/Other:
45c. Student’s Child Support Received:
45d. Student’s Tax Exempt Interest Income:
45e. Student’s Untaxed Portions of IRA Distributions:
45f. Student’s Untaxed Portions of Pensions:
45g. Student’s Housing, Food, & Living Allowances:
45h. Student’s Veterans Noneducation Benefits:
45i. Student’s Other Untaxed Income or Benefits:
45j. Money Received or Paid on Student’s Behalf:
46. Student Born Before January 1, 1994?
47. Is Student Married?
48. Working on Master’s or Doctorate in 2017-2018?
49. Is Student on Active Duty in U.S. Armed Forces?
50. Is Student a Veteran?
51. Does Student Have Children He/She Supports?
52. Does Student Have Dependents Other than Children/Spouse?
53. Parents Deceased?/Student Ward of Court?/In Foster Care?
54. Is or Was Student an Emancipated Minor?
55. Is or Was Student in Legal Guardianship?
56. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by High School/Homeless Liaison?
57. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by HUD?
58. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by Director of Homeless Youth Center?
59. Parents’ Marital Status:
60. Parents’ Marital Status Date:
61. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Social Security Number:
62. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Last Name:
63. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) First Name Initial:
64. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Date of Birth:
65. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Social Security Number:
66. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Last Name:
67. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) First Name Initial:
68. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Date of Birth:
69. Parents’ E-mail Address:
70. Parents’ State of Legal Residence:
71. Were Parents Legal Residents Before January 1, 2012?
72. Parents’ Legal Residence Date:
73. Parents’ Number of Family Members in 2017-2018:
74. Parents’ Number in College in 2017-2018 (Parents Excluded):
75. Parents Received Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income?
76. Parents Received SNAP?
77. Parents Received Free/Reduced Price Lunch?
78. Parents Received TANF?
79. Parents Received WIC?
80. Parents Filed 2015 Income Tax Return?
81. Parents’ Type of 2015 Tax Form Used:
82. Parents’ 2015 Tax Return Filing Status:
83. Parents Eligible to File a 1040A or 1040EZ?
84. Is Parent a Dislocated Worker?
85. Parents’ 2015 Adjusted Gross Income:
86. Parents’ 2015 U.S. Income Tax Paid:
87. Parents’ 2015 Exemptions Claimed:
88. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) 2015 Income Earned from Work:
89. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) 2015 Income Earned from Work:
90. Parents’ Total of Cash, Savings, and Checking Accounts:
91. Parents’ Net Worth of Current Investments:
92. Parents’ Net Worth of Businesses/Investment Farms:
93a. Parents’ Education Credits:
93b. Parents’ Child Support Paid:
93c. Parents’ Taxable Earnings from Need-Based Employment Programs:
93d. Parents’ College Grant and Scholarship Aid Reported in AGI:
93e. Parents’ Taxable Combat Pay Reported in AGI:
93f. Parents’ Cooperative Education Earnings:
94a. Parents’ Payments to Tax-Deferred Pensions & Retirement Savings:
94b. Parents’ Deductible Payments to IRA/Keogh/Other:
94c. Parents’ Child Support Received:
94d. Parents’ Tax Exempt Interest Income:
94e. Parents’ Untaxed Portions of IRA Distributions:
94f. Parents’ Untaxed Portions of Pensions:
94g. Parents’ Housing, Food, & Living Allowances:
94h. Parents’ Veterans Noneducation Benefits:
94i. Parents’ Other Untaxed Income or Benefits:
95. Student’s Number of Family Members in 2017-2018:
96. Student’s Number in College in 2017-2018:
97. Student Received Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income?
98. Student Received SNAP?
99. Student Received Free/Reduced Price Lunch?
100. Student Received TANF?
101. Student Received WIC?
102. Is Student or Spouse a Dislocated Worker?
103a. First Federal School Code:
103b. First Housing Plans:
103c. Second Federal School Code:
103d. Second Housing Plans:
103e. Third Federal School Code:
103f. Third Housing Plans:
103g. Fourth Federal School Code:
103h. Fourth Housing Plans:
103i. Fifth Federal School Code:
103j. Fifth Housing Plans:
103k. Sixth Federal School Code:
103l. Sixth Housing Plans:
103m. Seventh Federal School Code:
103n. Seventh Housing Plans:
103o. Eighth Federal School Code:
103p. Eighth Housing Plans:
103q. Ninth Federal School Code:
103r. Ninth Housing Plans:
103s. Tenth Federal School Code:
103t. Tenth Housing Plans:
104. Date Completed:
105. Signed By:
106. Preparer’s Social Security Number:
107. Preparer’s Employer Identification Number (EIN):
108. Preparer’s Signature:

What could possibly go wrong with the federal government sharing that information with various agencies and private entities?

Robbins also recorded this short video for Red Kudzu as a primer in 2018.

Due to the government shutdown, the best way to get President Trump’s attention is to tweet at him – @realDonaldTrump or @POTUS. Use the hashtag #VetoFEPA.

(Video) Jane Robbins: What is FEPA?

Jane Robbins, a senior fellow at American Principles Project, recorded this short video for Red Kudzu explaining what the Foundations of Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (S. 2046) is and what it will do if passed by the U.S. Senate.

The bill is before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

Call the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 or use the contact info below and ask them to oppose S. 2046, the Foundations of Evidence-Based Policymaking Act.

Here is the list of the committee members along with their Twitter handles and office phone numbers.

The primary issue with FEPA is that it would create a “unified evidence-building plan” for the entire federal government – in essence, a national database containing data from every federal agency on every citizen.

FEPA Gives Bureaucrats, Private Parties, Hackers A Data Gold Mine

Consider the data housed in the U.S. Department of Education (USED) by virtue of FAFSA.

The Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA – S 2046), passed by the House as HR 4174, encourages all federal agencies to share the data they maintain on American citizens and to make that data available for “research” by outside interests. All this would be done according to rules set by each agency and without the knowledge or consent of the citizens whose data would be disclosed and scrutinized.

In most cases, citizens give data to a particular federal agency for a particular purpose. They don’t expect that data to be “re-purposed” without their knowledge – even to achieve a goal the government thinks is worthwhile. In a free society, the government is subordinate to the citizen. If it wants to use his data for something he didn’t agree to, it should first obtain his consent. FEPA operates according to the contrary principle – that government is entitled to do whatever it wants with a citizen’s data and shouldn’t be hindered by his objection.

It’s critical to understand exactly what kinds of data reside in various agencies and ponder the possible consequences of sharing that data as contemplated by FEPA. Consider the data housed in the U.S. Department of Education (USED) by virtue of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Take a deep breath:

1. Student’s Last Name:
2. Student’s First Name:
3. Student’s Middle Initial:
4. Student’s Permanent Mailing Address:
5. Student’s Permanent City:
6. Student’s Permanent State:
7. Student’s Permanent ZIP Code:
8. Student’s Social Security Number:
9. Student’s Date of Birth:
10. Student’s Telephone Number:
11. Student’s Driver’s License Number:
12. Student’s Driver’s License State:
13. Student’s E-mail Address:
14. Student’s Citizenship Status:
15. Student’s Alien Registration Number:
16. Student’s Marital Status:
17. Student’s Marital Status Date:
18. Student’s State of Legal Residence:
19. Was Student a Legal Resident Before January 1, 2012?
20. Student’s Legal Residence Date:
21. Is the Student Male or Female?
22. Register Student With Selective Service System?
23. Drug Conviction Affecting Eligibility?
24. Parent 1 Educational Level:
25. Parent 2 Educational Level:
26. High School or Equivalent Completed?
27a. Student’s High School Name:
27b. Student’s High School City:
27c. Student’s High School State:
28. First Bachelor’s Degree before 2017-2018 School Year?
29. Student’s Grade Level in College in 2017-2018:
30. Type of Degree/Certificate:
31. Interested in Work-study?
32. Student Filed 2015 Income Tax Return?
33. Student’s Type of 2015 Tax Form Used:
34. Student’s 2015 Tax Return Filing Status:
35. Student Eligible to File a 1040A or 1040EZ?
36. Student’s 2015 Adjusted Gross Income:
37. Student’s 2015 U.S. Income Tax Paid:
38. Student’s 2015 Exemptions Claimed:
39. Student’s 2015 Income Earned from Work:
40. Spouse’s 2015 Income Earned from Work:
41. Student’s Total of Cash, Savings, and Checking Accounts:
42. Student’s Net Worth of Current Investments:
43. Student’s Net Worth of Businesses/Investment Farms:
44a. Student’s Education Credits:
44b. Student’s Child Support Paid:
44c. Student’s Taxable Earnings from Need-Based Employment Programs:
44d. Student’s College Grant and Scholarship Aid Reported in AGI:
44e. Student’s Taxable Combat Pay Reported in AGI:
44f. Student’s Cooperative Education Earnings:
45a. Student’s Payments to Tax-Deferred Pensions & Retirement Savings:
45b. Student’s Deductible Payments to IRA/Keogh/Other:
45c. Student’s Child Support Received:
45d. Student’s Tax Exempt Interest Income:
45e. Student’s Untaxed Portions of IRA Distributions:
45f. Student’s Untaxed Portions of Pensions:
45g. Student’s Housing, Food, & Living Allowances:
45h. Student’s Veterans Noneducation Benefits:
45i. Student’s Other Untaxed Income or Benefits:
45j. Money Received or Paid on Student’s Behalf:
46. Student Born Before January 1, 1994?
47. Is Student Married?
48. Working on Master’s or Doctorate in 2017-2018?
49. Is Student on Active Duty in U.S. Armed Forces?
50. Is Student a Veteran?
51. Does Student Have Children He/She Supports?
52. Does Student Have Dependents Other than Children/Spouse?
53. Parents Deceased?/Student Ward of Court?/In Foster Care?
54. Is or Was Student an Emancipated Minor?
55. Is or Was Student in Legal Guardianship?
56. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by High School/Homeless Liaison?
57. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by HUD?
58. Is Student an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth as Determined by Director of Homeless Youth Center?
59. Parents’ Marital Status:
60. Parents’ Marital Status Date:
61. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Social Security Number:
62. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Last Name:
63. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) First Name Initial:
64. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Date of Birth:
65. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Social Security Number:
66. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Last Name:
67. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) First Name Initial:
68. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) Date of Birth:
69. Parents’ E-mail Address:
70. Parents’ State of Legal Residence:
71. Were Parents Legal Residents Before January 1, 2012?
72. Parents’ Legal Residence Date:
73. Parents’ Number of Family Members in 2017-2018:
74. Parents’ Number in College in 2017-2018 (Parents Excluded):
75. Parents Received Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income?
76. Parents Received SNAP?
77. Parents Received Free/Reduced Price Lunch?
78. Parents Received TANF?
79. Parents Received WIC?
80. Parents Filed 2015 Income Tax Return?
81. Parents’ Type of 2015 Tax Form Used:
82. Parents’ 2015 Tax Return Filing Status:
83. Parents Eligible to File a 1040A or 1040EZ?
84. Is Parent a Dislocated Worker?
85. Parents’ 2015 Adjusted Gross Income:
86. Parents’ 2015 U.S. Income Tax Paid:
87. Parents’ 2015 Exemptions Claimed:
88. Parent 1 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) 2015 Income Earned from Work:
89. Parent 2 (Father’s/Mother’s/Stepparent’s) 2015 Income Earned from Work:
90. Parents’ Total of Cash, Savings, and Checking Accounts:
91. Parents’ Net Worth of Current Investments:
92. Parents’ Net Worth of Businesses/Investment Farms:
93a. Parents’ Education Credits:
93b. Parents’ Child Support Paid:
93c. Parents’ Taxable Earnings from Need-Based Employment Programs:
93d. Parents’ College Grant and Scholarship Aid Reported in AGI:
93e. Parents’ Taxable Combat Pay Reported in AGI:
93f. Parents’ Cooperative Education Earnings:
94a. Parents’ Payments to Tax-Deferred Pensions & Retirement Savings:
94b. Parents’ Deductible Payments to IRA/Keogh/Other:
94c. Parents’ Child Support Received:
94d. Parents’ Tax Exempt Interest Income:
94e. Parents’ Untaxed Portions of IRA Distributions:
94f. Parents’ Untaxed Portions of Pensions:
94g. Parents’ Housing, Food, & Living Allowances:
94h. Parents’ Veterans Noneducation Benefits:
94i. Parents’ Other Untaxed Income or Benefits:
95. Student’s Number of Family Members in 2017-2018:
96. Student’s Number in College in 2017-2018:
97. Student Received Medicaid or Supplemental Security Income?
98. Student Received SNAP?
99. Student Received Free/Reduced Price Lunch?
100. Student Received TANF?
101. Student Received WIC?
102. Is Student or Spouse a Dislocated Worker?
103a. First Federal School Code:
103b. First Housing Plans:
103c. Second Federal School Code:
103d. Second Housing Plans:
103e. Third Federal School Code:
103f. Third Housing Plans:
103g. Fourth Federal School Code:
103h. Fourth Housing Plans:
103i. Fifth Federal School Code:
103j. Fifth Housing Plans:
103k. Sixth Federal School Code:
103l. Sixth Housing Plans:
103m. Seventh Federal School Code:
103n. Seventh Housing Plans:
103o. Eighth Federal School Code:
103p. Eighth Housing Plans:
103q. Ninth Federal School Code:
103r. Ninth Housing Plans:
103s. Tenth Federal School Code:
103t. Tenth Housing Plans:
104. Date Completed:
105. Signed By:
106. Preparer’s Social Security Number:
107. Preparer’s Employer Identification Number (EIN):
108. Preparer’s Signature:

According to USED, nearly 20 million students filled out this form in the 2015/2016 application cycle. USED manages the portfolios of over 40 million loan applicants and recipients.

In 2015 hearings, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee uncovered the appalling lack of security with which this data is held. On cue, a huge FAFSA data breach was discovered in early 2017, exposing over 100,000 citizens to fraud based on their stolen records. Data-security hawk KrebsOnSecurity reported that the Internal Revenue Service disabled an automated tool on its website that was used to help students apply for financial aid in light of evidence that identity thieves were using the tool to steal the data and use it for tax-refund fraud. As Krebs warns, the only thing malefactors need to unlock a student’s entire life is name, birthdate, and social security number. FAFSA opens up the candy store.

Given the extraordinary breadth of the FAFSA data and its value to criminals, the government should be holding it in the cyber equivalent of Fort Knox. But FEPA heads in the other direction. It makes the data available to multiple other federal agencies and to outside interests under rules and security arrangements finalized by the agencies themselves. Propaganda claiming that FEPA adds additional protections for data is just that – propaganda. FEPA adds nothing to the “protections” already contained in the Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act, which have manifestly failed so far.

And USED isn’t the only federal agency that has allowed major data breaches. The hacking of the Office of Personnel Management affected information on 21.5 million Americans. Data-security inadequacies were also found in the IRS tool used to calculate Obamacare subsidies, and President Obama himself refused to use the healthcare.gov website in order to keep his own data secure. Even if data is kept in the agency that collected it, FEPA still creates a de facto national database, that provides an even bigger target for hackers. The reassurance by FEPA proponents that there is “no central repository of data” is a meaningless distinction without a difference.

Senators, do you want your children’s and your families’ highly sensitive data shared across the federal government without your knowledge and consent, for purposes you never agreed to? Do you want private researchers or private corporations to have access to it? If not, stop FEPA.

Tracking FEPA in the U.S. Senate

The Foundations of Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA) (H.R. 4174) passed in the U.S. House of Representatives after the rules were suspended and a voice vote taken. The Senate companion bill (S.2046) was introduced by U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) who is the ranking member of the Senate HELP Committee.

The Senate bill has been read twice and was referred to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

Here is the list of the committee members along with their Twitter handles and office phone numbers.

The primary issue with FEPA is that it would create a “unified evidence-building plan” for the entire federal government – in essence, a national database containing data from every federal agency on every citizen.

What could possibly go wrong there?

Please read and share this one-pager on the bill about why student privacy advocates have grave concerns about this bill.

FEPA Passes U.S. House By Voice Vote

Photo credit: UpstateNYer (CC-By-SA 3.0)

The Foundations of Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA) (H.R. 4174) passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a voice vote on Wednesday afternoon after House rules were suspended in order to pass the bill. The bill was sponsored by Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI).

This is typically done when a bill is considered “non-controversial.”

That isn’t the case with this bill. Two-thirds of the members present must vote in favor. The debate is limited to 40 minutes, and no amendments can be added.

Since it was a voice vote there was no roll call and we don’t know how each Representative voted.

No one spoke in opposition to the bill. You can listen to the “debate” below, as audio was captured by Cheri Kiesecker:

There is a companion bill in the Senate (S. 2046) sponsored by U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA).

Emmett McGroarty, a senior fellow with American Principles Project, made the following statement before the bill’s passage in the House.

Pressured by powerful lobbyists in Washington, Congress is about to take the first steps toward allowing massive data-mining by ‘researchers’ in the name of ‘transparency’ and ‘evidence.’ This will inevitably result in intrusive dossiers on citizens that will vastly expand the power of the already unaccountable administrative state. Citizens have the right to know that the personal data they turn over to the federal government stays with the agency to which it was submitted, and is not shared with other agencies for other purposes. Trampling on individual rights in this manner is bad enough; doing so without even fair hearing and debate is simply unconscionable. Congress must defeat this bill and protect individual freedom. If Congress refuses to do so, President Trump should veto this bill.

See and share this one-pager on the bill about why student privacy advocates have grave concerns about this bill and don’t find it “non-controversial” in the least.

Stop The Congressional Assault on Student Privacy and Parental Rights

Photo credit: Rob Crawley (CC-By-2.0)

Via American Principles Project:

Urgent action needed to stop Congress from passing what can only be described as an unprecedented assault on student privacy and parental rights. This assault comes in the form of three bills floating around Congress, one of which – H.R. 4174 The Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA)—could be voted on as early as this Wednesday.

  • The Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act (FEPA) (H.R. 4174, S. 2046), which would create a “unified evidence-building plan” for the entire federal government – in essence, a national database containing data from every federal agency on every citizen; and
  • The College Transparency Act (CTA) (H.R. 2434, S. 1121), which would overturn the Higher Education Act’s ban on a federal student unit-record system and establish a system of lifelong tracking of individuals by the federal government; and
  • The Student Privacy Protection Act (H.R. 3157), which would amend the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), 20 USC § 1232g, without restoring the FERPA privacy protections that were gutted by regulatory fiat in 2012.

Special interests that want increased access to highly personal student data for their own benefit have mounted a massive lobbying campaign to achieve their goals with respect to each of these bills. The bottom line is that bureaucrats in the Administrative State, as well as researchers, want a vast trove of data they can access to examine freeborn American citizens as lab rats – without their consent or even their knowledge.

Please read the one-pagers copied below which briefly address the most serious problems associated with each of these bills. Applicable to all three discussions are two other fundamental problems. The first is that the federal government has demonstrated its utter incompetence at protecting the security of individual data (see here, here, here, and here). Expanding the pool of data that will be so enticing to hackers is more than unwise – it’s madness.

But the more fundamental problem is this: Even if the data could be maintained with 100% security, and even if students could somehow benefit from collection and sharing of their own confidential data, there are certain lines a free society should not cross. Increasing the government repository of highly personal data further entrenches the Administrative State – the Swamp, if you will – which will inevitably use that data to increase its own power. The mere presence of such data with the government has an intimidating effect on the citizen, whose freedom of action is necessarily limited by his awareness of government surveillance. This is a feature of totalitarian governments; it should be anathema in free societies.

For the sake of American students and parents, we are counting on you to flood Congress with calls starting Monday morning and tell them to vote “NO” on H.R. 4174, H.R. 2434, and H.R. 3157. The number for Congress is 202.224.3121. Make your voice heard!