Susan Davis reports on the presidential race.

Barack Obama announced his support today of a sweeping overhaul of U.S. domestic spy powers, in a move that could spark some unrest from the party’s left wing, which opposes the legislation. His support of the bill, however, could also buffer him from attacks on the right–and specifically from rival John McCain–that he is soft on national security policy.

“It is not all that I would want. But given the legitimate threats we face, providing effective intelligence collection tools with appropriate safeguards is too important to delay,” he said in a statement.

The U.S. House overwhelmingly approved the legislation today, 293-129, with 128 Democrats and only one Republican opposing the overhaul. House Democratic leaders, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, supported the bill. The Senate is expected to vote next week.

In the statement, Obama echoed his earlier opposition to provisions in the bill that provide retroactive immunity to phone companies, and said that he would work to remove those provisions in the Senate–although the provisions are expected to remain intact in the compromise legislation.

“So I support the compromise, but do so with a firm pledge that as president, I will carefully monitor the program, review the report by the Inspectors General, and work with the Congress to take any additional steps I deem necessary to protect the lives–and the liberty–of the American people,” he said.

Original article posted here.