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's favorite legislator, Tony Shipley, is playing the role of Secret Agent Man again, fighting his own personal War on Terror and trying to trash that pesky little Fourth Amendment prohibition against unreasonable search and seizure.
You may remember that Shipley, claiming top-secret knowledge of terrorist activity in Tennessee, sponsored legislation to allow search warrants based on "reasonable suspicion" instead of "probable cause" to catch these villains. But Tennessee Attorney General Bob Cooper opined that the legislature couldn't do that. Undeterred, Shipley has asked Cooper another question: "Does the Fourth Amendment apply to foreign terrorists operating on United States soil."
The answer will not please our international man of intrigue. Aliens don't enjoy Fourth Amendment protections, the attorney general says, but "the applicability of the constitutional guarantees to aliens unlawfully in the United States would hinge on a fact-intensive inquiry into the nature of their connections with this country." Therefore, "as a practical matter," it's hard for law officers to know whether they need probable cause.