Key players

Sen. Dianne Feinstein

Democratic chairwoman of the Intelligence Committee. She would back the bill passed by the House — the USA Freedom Act, which would end the NSA's bulk collection of Americans' phone records but extend three expiring Patriot Act tools meant to fight terrorism. She dislikes a House provision that would put telecommunications companies in charge of data collection rather than the NSA.

Sen. Patrick Leahy

Senate sponsor of the USA Freedom Act, which the House has passed. A Democrat, he says NSA data collection is "unlawful." His bill would require court approval for some government surveillance.

Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch

Reflecting President Obama's views, she warns that inaction in the Senate would cause "a serious lapse" in the government's ability to protect Americans. She and the president have endorsed the USA Freedom Act.

Sen. Mitch McConnell

Majority leader says only an extension of the current law can pass in the GOP-controlled Senate. He opposes the USA Freedom Act and has introduced bills that would extend the current surveillance law.

Sen. Ron Wyden

A Democrat, he wishes the USA Freedom Act did more to rein in surveillance and phone data collection.

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