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Date Permissions Signed


Date of Award


Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science

First Advisor

Chen, Paul

Second Advisor

Weir, Sara J.

Third Advisor

Neem, Johann N.


The theory of a National Surveillance State, as provided by Balkin and Levinson, provides a broad framework for understanding the increased use and implications of electronic surveillance by the United States government. This thesis traces the development of electronic surveillance in the United States and evaluates how certain provisions of the Patriot Act have reduced privacy rights and have empowered the Executive branch with greater authority. As established by the theory of a National Surveillance State, the need for electronic surveillance is evident, yet it should be conducted within the context of constitutional protections of individual rights and political checks and balances.




United States. Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (USA PATRIOT ACT) Act of 2001, Electronic surveillance--United States, Civil rights--United States, Privacy, Right of--United States, War and emergency powers--United States, National security--Law and legislation--United States


Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Geographic Coverage

United States


masters theses




Copying of this thesis in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this thesis for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.