Senate returns to Patriot Act extension next week

But the Senate is known to be split on how to proceed with a longer extension. Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne FeinsteinIntel leaders push controversial encryption draft Democrats block energy spending bill over Iran amendment Durbin: Iran amendment could kill energy bill MORE (D-Calif.) earlier this year proposed a straight extension, which the Obama administration supports. And Judiciary Committee ranking member Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyOvernight Defense: House panel approves 0B defense bill Carter pledges probe of sex assault testimony Grassley: Carter emails contained 'sensitive' information MORE (R-Iowa) prefers a permanent extension.

While Senate Democrats seem eager to move a longer Patriot Act extension, the House might take a slower road. House Democrats hotly opposed any extension until thorough hearings are held, and Republicans promised to hold hearings during the three-month extension.

The surveillance authorities expire Feb. 28, and the extension approved by the House and Senate would extend that until May 27.

As of Friday morning, President Obama had not signed the extension, but is expected to, possibly over the weekend.

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