Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, expressed his support for controversial cybersecurity legislation on Tuesday, calling it a "common-sense solution" that will help protect America's economy.
The House is poised to debate the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, which would give businesses incentives to share cyberthreat information with government, and allow government agencies to share classified data with businesses.
The bill sparked civil liberties concerns and the White House and some Democrats say any cybersecurity legislation needs to give Homeland Security officials more authority to oversee private networks.
But in a commentary in Investor's Business Daily, Boehner said the bill strikes the right balance.
"The private sector owns and operates most of the networks under assault. So instead of imposing new mandates, or having government agencies monitor or police private networks, [CISPA] helps private-sector job creators defend themselves and their users," he wrote.
Republicans are predicting the bill, which has gathered bipartisan support, will pass the House, along with several other cybersecurity bills aimed at bolstering federal network security and providing for more R&D.
If passed, the measures will provide more pressure on the Senate, where sweeping cyber legislation is bogged down.
The Senate billed is backed by the White House, which has said legislation without more authority for DHS is too weak to effectively reduce cyberthreats.
But Boehner joined Senate in drawing a line against any new government regulation.
"The House is already on record here; we voted last year to stop federal bureaucrats from regulating the Internet," he wrote. "The government has no business monitoring or regulating what you do online."
The House Rules Committee will consider CISPA on Wednesday, with a House vote expected on Friday.
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