About 50 people participated in a demonstration in support of civil liberties Wednesday in front of Rep. Mike Thompson's office in Santa Rosa, an organizer said.
The event, co-sponsored by Progressive Democrats Sonoma County and the Coalition for Grassroots Progress, came in response to Thompson's expressed support for the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance programs.
Thompson, D-St. Helena, voted last month against an amendment that would have limited the agency's collection of telephone records to individuals under investigation for a national security violation.
Alice Chan of Sebastopol, a leader of both local groups, said they “insist that it's unacceptable for the government to target the telephone records of journalists, or to vacuum up the phone call records of hundreds of millions of Americans, or to capture and store everyone's emails.”
In a statement two weeks ago following a disclosure that the NSA violated privacy rules thousands of times, Thompson said the agency's alleged actions, if true, were “outrageous, inappropriate and must be addressed.”
Thompson, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said that Congress “should do more to ensure the NSA's operations respect Americans' civil liberties.”
Chan said that no one from Thompson's office on County Center Drive came out to talk to the demonstrators.
Thompson attended a ceremonial groundbreaking for a runway expansion project Wednesday at the Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport.