Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning Thursday issued the following statement blasting the Senate Commerce Committee for rejecting by a 3-21 vote an amendment to the Dotcom Act by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) that would have required Congressional approval of any relinquishment of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) to the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN):
“Once again, members of Congress are voting to surrender congressional authority to the Obama administration, without even an opportunity to see what they’re voting on. Nobody in Congress has seen ICANN’s proposal to commandeer Internet governance from the U.S. government, but the Senate Commerce committee has blindly just authorized whatever plan they might come up with. This is reckless. U.S. government oversight of the IANA functions has guaranteed a free and open Internet for almost two decades. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
“It is alarming the speed with which members of both chambers of Congress are willing to cede U.S. sovereignty to an unaccountable private foundation that is now establishing a global monopoly over DNS resolution. Free of government oversight, there will no longer be any First Amendment protections for the Internet, guaranteeing the IANA functions will one day be used to engage in censorship. In the not so distant future, the Internet will not be so free and open.”