House Moves to Stall Obama’s Plan to Give Up Internet Authority

Republicans fear the administration’s proposal could allow Russia or China to seize new powers.

A picture taken on September 17, 2013 in Saint-Denis, outside Paris, shows a room of cabling servers 'clients' at the French branch of Digital Realty, a company involved in datacenter acquisition, ownership, development and operation. Digital Realty's customers include domestic and international companies across multiple industry verticals ranging from information technology and Internet enterprises, to manufacturing and financial services.
National Journal
Brendan Sasso
Add to Briefcase
Brendan Sasso
May 8, 2014, 8:33 a.m.

A House com­mit­tee voted along party lines Thursday to delay the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s plan to give up au­thor­ity over the In­ter­net’s ad­dress sys­tem.

The bill, the DOT­COM Act, now heads to the full House for con­sid­er­a­tion.

Re­pub­lic­ans fear the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s plan could al­low Rus­sia, China, or oth­er au­thor­it­ari­an re­gimes to seize new powers over the In­ter­net and even cen­sor web­sites.

Their le­gis­la­tion would re­quire that the Gov­ern­ment Ac­count­ab­il­ity Of­fice study the is­sue be­fore the Com­merce De­part­ment could give up its con­trac­tu­al au­thor­ity over the In­ter­net Cor­por­a­tion for As­signed Names and Num­bers — the non­profit group that man­ages the tech­nic­al pro­ced­ures that al­low com­puters around the world to con­nect to web­sites. The trans­fer of au­thor­ity over IC­ANN to the “glob­al In­ter­net com­munity” is sched­uled to take place next year.

Rep. Greg Walden, an Ore­gon Re­pub­lic­an, said the trans­ition is “ex­tremely im­port­ant to the fu­ture of the In­ter­net.”

“What we’re say­ing is can we just stop a minute and get GAO to take a look?”

He ar­gued that once the U.S. gives up its role in In­ter­net man­age­ment, it will be im­possible to ever get it back.

But Demo­crats ar­gue the plan is just the latest step in the U.S. gov­ern­ment’s long­time sup­port of the “multi-stake­hold­er” mod­el of In­ter­net gov­ernance, in which de­cisions are made by an ar­ray of non­profits, com­pan­ies, aca­dem­ics, and en­gin­eers.

“I don’t know where these sus­pi­cions have come from that there’s some black heli­copter something or oth­er in this,” said Rep. Anna Eshoo, a Cali­for­nia Demo­crat.

The Demo­crats ar­gued that the bill would un­der­mine U.S. ef­forts to pro­mote In­ter­net freedoms around the world by mak­ing it ap­pear that the U.S. wants to have con­trol over the In­ter­net. 

The Re­pub­lic­ans on the En­ergy and Com­merce Com­mit­tee de­feated a Demo­crat­ic amend­ment that would have still called for a GAO study without stalling the In­ter­net power trans­fer.

The Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion an­nounced its form­al op­pos­i­tion to the DOT­COM Act earli­er this week, and its chances in the Sen­ate ap­pear slim.

What We're Following See More »
JUST IN CASE…
White House Adds Five New SCOTUS Candidates
10 hours ago
THE DETAILS

President Trump added five new names to his Supreme Court short list on Friday, should a need arise to appoint a new justice. The list now numbers 25 individuals. They are: 7th Circuit Appeals Judge Amy Coney Barrett, Georgia Supreme Court Justice Britt C. Grant, District of Columbia Circuit Appeals Court Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, 11th Circuit Appeals Judge Kevin C. Newsom, and Oklahoma Supreme Court Justice Patrick Wyrick.

SAVE THOSE PERTAINING TO EXEC BRANCH
Sessions: DOJ Will No Longer Issue Guidance Documents
10 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

"Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Friday the Justice Department will revamp its policy for issuing guidance documents. Speaking at the Federalist Society’s annual conference in Washington Friday, Sessions said the Justice Department will no longer issue guidance that 'purports to impose new obligations on any party outside the executive branch.' He said DOJ will review and repeal any documents that could violate this policy." Sessions said: “Too often, rather than going through the long, slow, regulatory process provided in statute, agencies make new rules through guidance documents—by simply sending a letter. This cuts off the public from the regulatory process by skipping the required public hearings and comment periods—and it is simply not what these documents are for. Guidance documents should be used to explain existing law—not to change it.”

Source:
STARTS LEGAL FUND FOR WH STAFF
Trump to Begin Covering His Own Legal Bills
12 hours ago
THE DETAILS
DISCUSSED THE MATTER FOR A NEW BOOK
Steele Says Follow the Money
13 hours ago
STAFF PICKS

"Christopher Steele, the former British intelligence officer who wrote the explosive dossier alleging ties between Donald Trump and Russia," says in a new book by The Guardian's Luke Harding that "Trump's land and hotel deals with Russians needed to be examined. ... Steele did not go into further detail, Harding said, but seemed to be referring to a 2008 home sale to the Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev. Richard Dearlove, who headed the UK foreign-intelligence unit MI6 between 1999 and 2004, said in April that Trump borrowed money from Russia for his business during the 2008 financial crisis."

Source:
BRITISH PUBLICIST CONNECTED TO TRUMP TOWER MEETING
Goldstone Ready to Meet with Mueller’s Team
14 hours ago
THE LATEST

"The British publicist who helped set up the fateful meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a group of Russians at Trump Tower in June 2016 is ready to meet with Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller's office, according to several people familiar with the matter. Rob Goldstone has been living in Bangkok, Thailand, but has been communicating with Mueller's office through his lawyer, said a source close to Goldstone."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login