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Though Parts of the Patriot Act Have Expired, Rand Paul Says This Is How the Government May Be Collecting as Much Data as Ever

"You have to be careful how they parse their words..."

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), speaks at the 2013 Values Voter Summit, held by the Family Research Council, on October 11, 2013 in Washington, D.C. (Getty Images)

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) prevented key parts of the Patriot Act from being renewed on Sunday night, ostensibly preventing the National Security Agency from collecting Americans’ phone records in bulk.

But Paul said on Glenn Beck's radio program Monday that -- while the move is a victory for those opposed to the NSA's domestic surveillance programs -- in reality the government is likely collecting as much information as ever.

"You have to be careful how they parse their words," the presidential candidate explained. "They might have stopped one program, but they probably have ten others doing the same thing. They have an executive order called 12333. Under that executive order, we really don't know everything they're doing, but they're doing bulk collection under that."

"They may well be doing more bulk collection under that than they are under the phone collection program," Paul added.

This April 25, 2014 file photo shows Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. speaking at the Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge, Mass. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, File) This April 25, 2014 file photo shows Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. speaking at the Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge, Mass. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, File)

Paul also said there is a provision in the Patriot Act enabling the government to continue ongoing investigations.

"My guess is that since the bulk so-called investigation was collecting everybody's records, they could simply say, 'Well, we started doing that before, so that's an ongoing investigation,'" Paul remarked.

"So are they stopping it? I don't know," Paul continued. "The president's number one man over there, [Director of National Intelligence James Clapper], lied to us and told us the program didn't even exist. Now we're supposed to accept what they're telling us, that the world will end and the sky will fall if it ends."

"I don't know," Paul concluded. "There's a certain lack of trust I have for this administration."

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