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The Center, based in New York, said several senators have questioned the Patriot Act’s constitutionality in such cases.

“The Patriot Act provision requires the FBI to notify Congress about the number of such warrants, but this single order covering millions of people is a deceptive end-run around that disclosure requirement,” the group said.

(Corrected paragraph:) ACLU Legislative Counsel Michelle Richardson called for an immediate end to the program, saying it exposed “the growing gap between the public’s and the government’s understandings” of modern surveillance.

“Congress should initiate a full investigation,” she added.