Let Cybersecurity Bill stay dead permanently
The Internet continues to be a political football in Washington. The latest move is that President Barack Obama may circumvent Congress by using executive orders to impose parts of the failed Cybersecurity Act, S. 2414, co-sponsored by Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine. The act would have encouraged government and industry to share information on supposed “threats” to the Internet. In reality, it would have made it easier for the government to access your email and other Internet information without a warrant.
The bill was opposed by conservatives, libertarians and liberals resisting increasing the power of government over the Internet; and by business groups worried about even more regulations on business as the economy continues to stagnate. We have written editorials against this act and similar legislation. Fortunately, Aug. 2 it fell short in the Senate, with 52 votes in favor and 46 against; supporters needed 60 votes to clear a threatened Republican filibuster.
Unfortunately, voting in favor were California’s two senators, Dianne Feinstein, chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, and Barbara Boxer. Most of their fellow Democrats also favored the bill. But fellow Democrat Ron Wyden or Oregon, a staunch privacy advocate, opposed the bill even though some changes were made to address his concerns.
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