Covered at Reason 24/7: Drone Bill Passed Unanimously by Florida House Committee


Just a day after Rand Paul's 13 hour filibuster in the Senate on the use of drones domestically, a committee in the Florida House unanimously passed a bill that would heavily restrict the use of drones by law enforcement.

From the Orlando Sentinel:

A House committee unanimously passed a bill that limits law enforcement to use surveillance drones only if they've obtained a search warrant or can cite "imminent danger."

"What we're trying to do is make it very clear to our police chiefs and to our sheriffs…don't game the system," said Rep. Ritch Workman, R-Melbourne. "Do not tell me you're putting a drone up for a forest fire but you're really going to fly it over a neighborhood where you think there might be drug activity going on."

Refreshing. Are legislators in your state trying something similar?

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  1. They’re also working to loosen the language to make the police organizations less unhappy, so I’ll wait to see what ends up on the books before applauding.

    1. my roomate’s sister makes $71/hr on the internet. She has been fired from work for 9 months but last month her pay was $20701 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read more here… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=diP-o_JxysA

      1. Your roommate’s sister was spotted servicing Warty in the back of a California Pizza Kitchen somewhere outside of Toledo the other day. I’m not gonna put too much credence in what she tells you.

  2. A House committee unanimously passed a bill that limits law enforcement to use surveillance drones only if they’ve obtained a search warrant or can cite “imminent danger.”

    And what is required to prove imminent danger? A signal from a trained police dog?

    1. A giddy feeling in your tummy.

        1. Florida is great that way. We’ll do something that seems almost libertarian, then do something else that makes us look insane. It’s our idiom.

          1. I’d expect no less from a state that resembles a flaccid cock.

            1. At least my state has a cock.

              1. Your state is a cock, cock.

                1. Your state is a vagina, Armstrong-killer.

              2. you mean Pam Bondi?

          2. Makes us “look” insane? One of the many things I love about living in Florida is that I am surrounded by crazies. And I fit right in.

  3. A House committee unanimously passed a bill that limits law enforcement to use surveillance drones only if they’ve obtained a search warrant or can cite “imminent danger

    Why do I get a warm and fuzzy feeling and then have it upset by the word “or”? Can these fucks not just adhere strictly to the Constitution? There’s always got to be some little bit of wiggle room with an ambiguous term like “imminent danger.” And let me guess: that “imminence” is to be determined by the cop on the scene and how he “feels” at the time, free of consequence if an incorrect interpretation of what is really happening results in a murder of an otherwise non-threatening person.

    I was really excited when I saw the headline. That excitement is shot all to hell now.

    1. (hands Ken some Viagra)

    2. I’m not sure where all this stands today, but that used to be a fairly stiff standard. Somebody’s got to be about to get hurt. That’s definitely true in speech cases. Except when it isn’t, but just ignore my lawyerly waffling.

      1. It’s not waffling. It’s recognition that reality doesn’t fit into neat cubbyholes. The 4th amendment invites debate since it uses the word ‘reasonable’ which is of course endlessly debatable.

        I prefer my state constitution, which specifically recognizes and protects privacy and thus there is far less room for waffling. It results in local law enforcement in my state having far more restrictions on search and seizure than most other states, far more than California, Arizona, etc.

        If you merely limit un-reasonable searches you aren’t doing nearly as much as protecting privacy does.

      1. This is when I give you the finger…and you give me my phone call.

        1. Tell me, Mr. Anderson, what good is a phone call if you’re unable to speak.

    3. You are begging the question by implying this is extra-constitutional.

    4. Nowhere in the Constitution does it say you need a warrant for any search. That’s an INTERPRETATION of the meaning of “unreasonable search” by the courts that came later on.

      I’m not even sure if drone surveillance should even count as a search, since it does not reveal anything hidden, just takes advantage of an advantageous observing location. If we went back to 1789, then yes, it would be a violation of the expectation of privacy (not the 4th) to look upon someone’s property from the air above because there were no aircraft at the time. Nowadays, if something is visible from above you have no expectation that people in aircraft won’t be able to see it.

  4. Right wing kooks with your fantasy stories of domestic spy drones, targeted extrajudicial killings, and ambassadors dying in attacks on our consulates. You need to embrace reality because you are losing any sense of yours.

    1. Are you applying for a job as a Daily Kos commentator? That was pretty solid except it needed more all-caps.

      1. I came across a remark from someone on Huffpo with mixed feelings about Lindsey Graham. Booed him for spreading ‘conspiracy’ theories about what happened in Bhengazi, praised him for coming out against Paul. Pretty much just copied the tone from that source.

        1. I’ve got to say…”Fanned and faved!”

          1. So that’s what that means. I kept seeing F&F everywhere while wading through that dumbass incubation center otherwise known as the Hufpo blog.

  5. https://twitter.com/donnabrazile

    Donna Brazile: Making sure you forget it took a Republican to filibuster on behalf of civil liberties.

    1. http://www.motherjones.com/moj…..g-campaign

      A link to the David Corn article that Brazile was referencing.

    2. It is only grandstanding when a republican does it.

  6. Is there some capacity of a drone that makes them more efficacious at surveillance than a helicopter? We frequently use helicopters (used one two nights ago to locate a robbery suspect successfully) especially their FLIR functionality to do so. In terms of surveillance functionality is there anyplace a drone can go that a helicopter can’t, or stuff it can see that a helicopter can’t?

    Most of the stuff we use helicopters for is patrol backup (lighting up an area etc.) and finding fleeing suspects, not “surveillance” fwiw.

    1. Drones can stay airborne for longer durations and require a less skilled pilot. I’m not sure but I suspect they’re less noisy also. Aside from those considerations, as far as ability to surveil they’re actually inferior, since a human inside a copter with binoculars has more flexibility to look in different directions.

  7. Surveillance drones have as much to do with drone killings as four-door sedans have to do with SWAT raids.

  8. Dude knows he is talking a lot of smack over there.


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