The Senate Judiciary Committee and the House both have made moves to restrain wiretapping legislation and possibly as important to remove provisions that would forgive telecom companies that enabled the US Government to tap phone conversations for all Americans.
Its a class action lawyer’s dream case. The federal government legislature preventing the exclusion of some of the largest corporations in the country from prosecution for illegally aiding in the wire tapping of every person in the country. The corporations have deep pockets and the legislature wants to make a point about the abuse of power by the Executive Branch without actually having to fight directly against the Executive Branch.
So instead by default they can allow trial lawyers to gather up a grass roots group of all Americans and file against all the major phone companies (excluding Qwest, the only phone company that apparently did not cooperate after they did a legal review of the request.)