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Entries in ALG (1596)

Friday
Mar272015

ALG urges votes to protect the Internet with Sen. Mike Lee amendments 

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March 26, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today urged the U.S. Senate to hold up or down votes on amending the budget resolution to include S.Amdt. 751 and S.Amdt. 856 offered by Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah):

 

"The Internet is the great democratizer of speech around the world. The amendments offered by Senator Mike Lee are about protecting the free and open Internet from two separate but equally important threats: foreign domination and excessive government regulation.

 

"The first amendment will guarantee that any proposal to transition Internet governance over the domain name system from Commerce Department oversight will require Congressional assent, giving proper oversight to any administration proposal. This will protect the domain name system from any potential foreign capture and protect the free and open Internet — everywhere.

 

"The second will roll back the Federal Communications Commission's alarming change to the Communications Act, applying Title II to Internet broadband, and assure that only Congress has the power to make such a change to law. Whatever the merits of so-called net neutrality, it is not up to the executive branch to regulate the Internet at will, which is what happened here. It's an awful precedent, and it is up to Congress to assert its legislative prerogatives here.

 

"The Internet may be free but that freedom is also quite fragile, and it would be naïve for this Congress to ignore these obvious threats to it. Votes should be allowed on Senator Lee's amendments."

 

To view online: http://getliberty.org/alg-urges-votes-to-protect-the-internet-with-sen-mike-lee-amendments/

 

Attachments:

 

S.Amdt. 751, To establish a spending-neutral reserve fund to support legislation maintaining United States oversight over functions of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers and preventing the United States from transferring such Internet responsibilities, at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Lee-856-Net-Neutrality.pdf

 

S.Amdt. 856, To establish a spending-neutral reserve fund to support legislation preventing the Federal Communications Commission from reclassifying broadband providers as common carriers under title II of the Communications Act of 1934 and from implementing other ''net neutrality'' provisions, at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Lee-856-Net-Neutrality.pdf

 

Interview Availability: Please contact Americans for Limited Government at (703) 383-0880 ext. 106 or at media@limitgov.org to arrange an interview with ALG experts including ALG President Rick manning.

 

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Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.

Friday
Mar132015

ALG calls for Lindsey Graham resignation for proposing military coup

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March 12, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today called for the resignation of presidential hopeful Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) for suggesting at a New Hampshire event his first act as president would be to use the military to force Congress to end sequestration (see video), saying, "Here is the first thing I would do if I were President of the United States. I wouldn't let Congress leave town until we fix this. I would literally use the military to keep them in if I had to. We're not leaving town until we restore these defense cuts. We are not leaving town until we restore the intel cuts":

 

"Senator Lindsey Graham's statement that for his first act as president, he 'would literally use the military to keep Congress in if I had to' followed by 'We're not leaving town until we restore these defense cuts… We are not leaving town until we restore the intel cuts' while campaigning in New Hampshire is the most troubling statement uttered by a supposedly serious candidate for President in my memory. 

 

"The very fact that Graham has the imagery of M1 Abrams tanks surrounding the Capitol building to force Congress to do his bidding is so far removed from any Constitutional framework, that Graham should not only withdraw from the Presidential race, but should immediately resign from the Senate. This is no laughing matter. And then his spokesman says the comment should not be taken literally?

 

"There literally is no place in our elective government for someone who advocates a military solution against those elected to do the will of the people when he doesn't get his way.  The same Congress that expresses concern about President Obama's seemingly daily abuse of power should immediately move to censure the senior Senator from South Carolina and the people of that state should demand his immediate removal from office."

 

To view online: http://getliberty.org/alg-calls-for-lindsey-graham-resignation-for-proposing-military-coup/

 

Attachments:

 

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) speaking at "Politics and Pie" event hosted by the Concord City Republican Committee, stating, "Here is the first thing I would do if I were President of the United States. I wouldn't let Congress leave town until we fix this. I would literally use the military to keep them in if I had to. We're not leaving town until we restore these defense cuts. We are not leaving town until we restore the intel cuts." March 8, 2015 at http://benswann.com/graham-military-force-congress/

 

The military line was "not to be taken literally," according to Graham spokesman Kevin Bishop, March 12, 2015 at http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-03-12/how-a-lindsey-graham-joke-turned-into-a-coup-plot-against-the-government

 

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Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.

Friday
Feb272015

ALG responds to Rep. Emmer letter on fast track trade promotion authority on TPP 

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Feb. 25, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today in a letter to Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) and House Republicans responded to the Congressman's push in favor of granting fast track trade promotion authority (TPA) to President Barack Obama on the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

 

"There continues to be a misconception that TPA will allow Congress to set objectives for negotiations, in particular as they relate to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal," wrote Manning in his letter.

 

Manning was responding to a dear colleague letter from Rep. Emmer obtained by Americans for Limited Government that told fellow House members that "Through TPA, Congress establishes the negotiating objectives for the Administration and ensures that Congress is consulted closely throughout the negotiations."

 

To which, Manning responded, "Congress can demand anything it wants, but President Obama is under no legal requirement to follow those demands.  In fact, the only way that Congress has to impose its will on a negotiating process is to force any treaty submitted to be subjected to full and transparent scrutiny, including the ability to amend objectionable sections.  Under TPA, this ability to fix highly objectionable areas is voted away."

 

The Americans for Limited Government letter to Emmer also noted that the Obama administration was already disregarding Congressional appeals for the trade representative to address currency manipulation: "Given that the U.S. Trade Representative testified earlier this year before the Senate that he chose to disregard a letter signed by a majority of the House and Senate urging that currency manipulation be included in any prospective deal, it is clear that President Obama has no more regard for Congressional input in this area than he has shown on immigration."

 

Trade promotion authority is expected come up in both the House and Senate as early as next month.

 

To view online: http://getliberty.org/alg-responds-to-rep-emmer-letter-on-fast-track-trade-promotion-authority-on-tpp/

 

Attachments: 

Americans for Limited Government letter to Rep. Tom Emmer, Feb. 25, 2015 at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/LettertoEmmerandHouseGOP2-25-15.pdf

 

Rep. Tom Emmer letter to House colleagues at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/EmmerLetter.pdf

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Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.

Thursday
Feb262015

ALG - FCC skips Congress, approves Net regs 

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Feb. 26, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement on the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) 3-2 vote in favor of new so-called "net neutrality" regulations (partial transcript of meeting enclosed):

 

"The FCC has voted to do that which Congress has denied — and that's essentially to rewrite the 1934 Communications Act to treat broadband Internet as a utility under Title II. Whatever the merits of 'net neutrality,' the fact is that this entire process has been designed to avert the traditional, constitutional lawmaking process. It also creates much regulatory uncertainty, since broadband was previously treated as exempt 'information services' providers by the FCC in 2002. This is a dysfunctional regulatory precedent where an agency can simply change its interpretation of law depending on the partisan composition of the board. That is not the rule of law, it is rule by executive decree. Why even have a Congress? 

"This new rule, when it is finally published, as anyone familiar with public utilities knows, will guarantee higher rates, less competition, and a regulatory burden that stifles innovation. It is nothing more than authoritarian overreach, an extra-legal assault on our system of government.  The Obama regime continues its track record of disregard and disdain for precedent, the Constitution and simple fairness."

 

To view online: http://getliberty.org/fcc-skips-congress-approves-net-regs/

 

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Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.

Thursday
Feb262015

ALG - Senators Sullivan and Nelson ask tough questions of NTIA at Internet governance hearing 

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Legal authority to perform Internet Assigned Numbers Authority functions to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers and the global multistakeholder community questioned

 

Feb. 25, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement praising Senator Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) and Senator Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) for the questions they asked National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) head Lawrence Strickling at today's Internet governance hearing at the Senate Commerce Committee:

 

"Americans for Limited Government strongly praises Senator Nelson and Senator Sullivan for asking the tough questions of NTIA and asserting Congressional prerogatives over any transfer of Internet governance to the international community. These are the questions that need to be asked of an administration that is hell-bent on averting Congressional votes granting legal authority for the Internet transfer, and so Congress should continue to deny that authority. No less than the First Amendment protections for the Internet afforded by a government contract are at stake.

 

"In fact, we are astonished that almost one year after NTIA announced the Internet governance transfer, the agency still refuses to provide the agency's actual legal authority document to perform the transfer. It is amazing Mr. Strickling was unable to assure Senator Sullivan that he could produce the legal opinion, despite previous numerous Congressional requests, media inquiries from the Wall Street Journal, and even an almost one-year old Freedom of Information Act request from Americans for Limited Government. It is becoming increasingly concerning that the agency may have proceeded with the Internet transfer without ever having received even an internal legal opinion of the authority to perform the transfer."

 

To view online: http://getliberty.org/senators-sullivan-and-nelson-ask-tough-questions-of-ntia-at-internet-governance-hearing/

 

Attachments:

 

Senator Dan Sullivan questioning NTIA head Lawrence Strickling, Feb. 25, 2015 at

http://www.senate.gov/isvp/?type=LIVE&comm=commerce&filename=commerce022515&stt=01:26:25

 

Sullivan: "There's been a lot of articles in the paper very concerned about this, as I certainly am, but one of those has actually raised a very important issue that I'd also like you to address is your legal authority to do this. Again, another issue with this administration I have a problem with is taking action where you have no legal authority. Under the Constitution, the Congress has the power to transfer federal government property. [IANA functions] is federal government property, it is valuable property, and I don't think you've been authorized by Congress to take this action yet."

 

Strickling: "There is no government property that is the subject of this contract. All the contract does is designate ICANN to perform the IANA functions. They were given no assets of the United States with which to perform these functions. The domain name file is—"

 

Sullivan: "Is there a Commerce Department legal opinion on this issue?"

 

Strickling: "Yes there is, sir."

 

Sullivan: "Can we see that?"

 

Strickling: "I'll take that back, I'm not in a position to say yes or no but I will [take your request back]."

 

Senator Bill Nelson questioning NTIA head Lawrence Strickling, Feb. 25, 2015 at http://www.senate.gov/isvp/?type=LIVE&comm=commerce&filename=commerce022515&stt=02:11:25

 

Nelson: "Last year, in the omnibus appropriations, a rider was placed that prevents NTIA from spending funds on the transition to IANA contract before September 30 of this year, 2015. Can you explain NTIA's interpretation of that rider, Mr. Secretary?"

 

Strickling: "We have interpreted that resolution or interpreted that language to prevent us from allowing the transition to occure before September 30… In consultations with members and staffs up here on the Hill, we sought to clarify whether that would in any way restrict our ability to monitor the transition planning process which is going on in the community, and is not subject to any restrictions in the legislation and in fact as you know the rider imposes reporting requirements on us. It was clear Congress intended us to continue to monitor the process and report back on what's happening. And then within that we had also indicated that our need and I think the needs of serving American interests that we provide feedback where we thought it was appropriate, and we have engaged in that. Again, I'm very careful not to steer decision-making one way or antoher but I think through a series of questions that we've been asking and will continue to ask we are trying to make sure the process considers all the issues before reaching a final result. But we take very seriously the fact that no transition will take place before September 30."

 

Nelson: "What happens if that rider is continued?"

 

Strickling: "Again, I wouldn't want to speculate on that. I'm hopeful that the process within the community will result in a proposal that will demonstrate to Congress and the valid concerns people have up here about the process that in fact it's being handled in a responsible fashion, that the transition will meet the conditions, and that there will be no need to extend that particular provision past September 30."

 

Nelson: "Well, is the world going to stop revolving if it is extended?"

 

Strickling: "I don't like to speculate on what will or won't happen in the future, but I'm pretty confident the world won't stop revolving, yes, sir."

 

Interview Availability: Please contact Americans for Limited Government at (703) 383-0880 ext. 106 or at media@limitgov.org to arrange an interview with ALG experts including ALG President Rick Manning.

 

 

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Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.