Congress must act to get Obama to extend IANA functions contract 2 years

Sept. 7, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement urging Congress to not only defund the Internet giveaway again  but also to require the Obama administration to extend the current government contract with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) for another two years and to authorize Congress to take the administration to court should Obama fail to comply with federal statute forbidding the transfer:

“It is clear by now that the Obama administration has failed to do its homework on ceding the IANA functions to ICANN, having apparently based on FOIA responses performed no legal analysis prior to the transition’s announcement in March 2014 on whether it even has the authority to perform the transfer or on the antitrust issues the will arise from creating a global monopoly over the Internet’s domain name system.

“To stop this foolish surrender of a function that has been performed successfully by the government since the Internet was invented, Congress should not only once again defund the transfer, as it has the past two fiscal years, but also should require that the current government contract with ICANN be extended at least another two years, and authorize Congress to take Obama to federal court to prevent the transfer from being performed in defiance of the law.

“The federal government’s stewardship of the Internet has been a success story since the late 1990s, and we’d have to have lost our collective minds to cede oversight to foreign powers that do not hold U.S. interests to heart including the free and open Internet. There is no replacement for the First Amendment’s protection, which is a prerequisite for every action the government undertakes, including overseeing this contract. The surest way to prevent the Internet from being censored is to keep things the way they are, with the Constitution and if necessary the role of federal courts to apply it. Because once government oversight is gone, so too are the Internet’s First Amendment protections.”

Attachments:

Au Revoir to the Open Internet, L. Gordon Crovitz, June 29, 2014 at http://www.wsj.com/articles/gordon-crovitz-au-revoir-to-the-open-internet-1404076280

Halfway to Wrecking Internet Freedom, By L. Gordon Crovitz, Nov. 30, 2014 at http://www.wsj.com/articles/gordon-crovitz-halfway-to-wrecking-internet-freedom-1417387404

An Internet Giveaway to the U.N., By L. Gordon Crovitz, Aug. 28, 2016 at http://www.wsj.com/articles/an-internet-giveaway-to-the-u-n-1472421165

NTIA performed no antitrust analysis even as it proceeded with the creation of Internet monopoly, Aug. 26, 2016 at http://getliberty.org/ntia-performed-no-antitrust-analysis-even-as-it-created-global-internet-monopoly/

NTIA Freedom of Information Act response to Americans for Limited Government requesting antitrust analysis on relinquishing IANA functions to NTIA, Aug. 16, 2016 at https://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/NTIA-No-Records-Response-Antitrust-Analysis-08.16.16.pdf

NTIA FOIA documents fail to show legal authority for Internet governance transfer, June 16, 2015 at http://getliberty.org/ntia-foia-documents-fail-to-show-legal-authority-for-internet-governance-transfer/

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request to National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), March 27, 2014 at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/DOC-NTIA-FOIA-re-ICANN-03-27-14.pdf

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) interim response by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), June 30, 2014 at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/DOC-NTIA_FOIA-Responsive-Docs-Set1.pdf

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) further response by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, June 15, 2015 at http://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/DOC-NTIA_FOIA-Responsive-Docs-Set2.pdf

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) further response by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, Jan. 7, 2016 at https://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/NTIAFOIAResponse1-7-2016.pdf

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) further response by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, March 14, 2016 at https://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/NTIAFOIA3rdSet-3-14-16.pdf

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) further response by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, March 18, 2016 at https://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/NTIAFOIAResponse4thSet3-18-16.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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TPP on life support but not dead yet

Aug. 30, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government issued the following statement in response to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) announcement last week to the Kentucky State Farm Bureau that “The current agreement, the Trans-Pacific [Partnership], which has some serious flaws, will not be acted upon this year” by the Senate:

“Senate Majority Leader McConnell’s announcement that he is halting any Senate consideration of the Trans-Pacific Partnership this year because of, ‘serious flaws’ in the agreement is welcome news. McConnell’s declaration that the TPP needs to be renegotiated by a future president in order to win Congressional approval is a recognition of the political realities of trade and the toxicity of the Obama’s agreement.

“The Trans-Pacific Partnership is on life support — but not dead yet. One potential trouble spot is that due to the decision to provide the President fast track trade authority, which mandates that Congress consider any agreement submitted by the President within a date certain. Should Obama choose to force a vote, McConnell should lead the charge to immediately vote the fatally flawed deal down.

“McConnell’s announcement assures that any decisions about the future of the TPP which fundamentally shifts the world’s economic arrangements will be made in a regular session of Congress, free from the outsized special interests influence that pervade a lame duck session.  In making this decision, McConnell is putting the good of the country ahead of President Obama’s desire to cement his legacy and the American people owe McConnell a debt of gratitude for this smart and courageous decision.”

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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NTIA performed no antitrust analysis even as it proceeded with the creation of Internet monopoly

Aug. 26, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement announcing a Freedom of Information Act response from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) regarding any antitrust analysis that was done by the agency with regards to ceding the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN):

“NTIA’s admission that they failed to consider the antitrust ramifications of transitioning governance over the Internet’s domain name system to ICANN since 2014, covering the entire period of the transition, is simply stunning. The antitrust implications were discussed in the 1998 White Paper prepared during the Clinton Administration that is effectively the Holy Grail for those seeking to know about Internet governance issues, yet somehow the politically blinded Obama Administration missed the obvious point that ICANN loses its anti-trust shield should the government relinquish control over the property to them. This, even as NTIA has in essence been preparing to create a global monopoly over the Internet’s domain name system. They didn’t even bother to ask if there would be any concerns with that. Simply unbelievable.

“The irony is that one of the false fronts put forward by those who are pushing the giveaway is that it will prevent a ‘breaking’ of the Internet, yet losing antitrust protection creates significant risk that Internet governance will be broken to bits, as different entities attempt to legally mirror ICANN domain name auctioning functions.

“Perhaps most importantly, the admission that anti-trust ramifications were not considered demonstrates that NTIA failed again to follow Congress’ mandate that they present a report on what could go wrong should the giveaway move forward. Rather than raise this obvious point and ask for a continuance of some form of antitrust exemption similar to Major League Baseball their failure to even stumble across this problem clearly demonstrates that the Obama Administration has given zero thought to the potential downside of this giveaway.

“This comes atop NTIA having apparently performed no legal analysis on whether it even had the requisite legal authority to relinquish the IANA functions in the first place prior to announcing the transition and NTIA violating Congress’ explicit prohibition on using funds to proceed with the transition the past two years even as the agency was traveling all the world and collaborating with multistakeholders working on the transition.

“Given this admission, Congress has no choice but to deny Obama’s attempt to giveaway the Internet governance functions through any means necessary including filing suit over the Executive Branch’s abrogation of Congress’ Article One power of the purse.  The Obama Administration has clearly been irresponsible in moving forward in this request, and it is Congress’ job to be the adult and stop this poorly conceived transition of the Internet. It is time this half-baked, illegal transition of critical Internet governance be thrown in the trash where it belongs. NTIA was so busy figuring out how it would turn over the Internet domain name system, apparently nobody stopped to ask if it could legally create such a monopoly.”

Attachments:

NTIA Freedom of Information Act response to Americans for Limited Government requesting antitrust analysis on relinquishing IANA functions to NTIA, Aug. 16, 2016 at https://getliberty.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/NTIA-No-Records-Response-Antitrust-Analysis-08.16.16.pdf

“Applicable antitrust law will provide accountability to and protection for the international Internet community. Legal challenges and lawsuits can be expected within the normal course of business for any enterprise and the new corporation should anticipate this reality.” Federal Register Volume 63, Number 111 published on Wednesday, June 10, 1998, Pages 31741-31751, http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-1998-06-10/html/98-15392.htm

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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The economy still stinks, and yes, that’s news

Aug. 26, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement in response to the revised GDP numbers for the second quarter:

“Today we learned that the economy grew even slower than originally thought in the second quarter, dropping to an inflation-adjusted annualized 1.1 percent. That stinks. Combined with the really bad 0.8 percent in the first quarter, that means just to get to 2 percent for the year, the economy will need to grow above an annualized 3 percent for each of the last two quarters. To get to 3 percent for the year, it will need to grow at more than 5 percent for each of the last two quarters. Not going to happen.

“President Obama promised to turn the economy around after the financial crisis, and not only has he failed spectacularly, we are risking posting the worst economy on record — ever. Even worse from a growth perspective than the Great Depression given the past decade’s data. It’s that bad.

“The failure to hold Washington, D.C. accountable lays at the heart of the economy’s failure to turn around. All we’ve done is double the national debt in eight years to $20 trillion, taxing and regulating ourselves into oblivion and chasing even more business and the jobs they create overseas by making it even harder to produce things in America and turn a profit. The truth is, those looking overseas for growth opportunities are the smart ones, because if we have another four years like Obama’s past eight, you’d have to be an idiot to invest in America with this assault on growth by Washington, D.C.”

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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State Dept. admits $400 million cash to Iran was ransom, puts Americans overseas in mortal danger

Aug. 18, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement in response to the State Department admitting the $400 million cash to Iran was in exchange for hostages:

“The State Department is now saying the $400 million cash payment to Iran was contingent on American prisoners’ release. This admission after lying to the American people about cash for hostages shows that even after almost 8 years in office, Obama’s foreign policy team is too dangerous to be trusted. This must come as devastating news to every American who have loved ones working or studying overseas, as Obama has now put a price on all their heads.”

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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NTIA proceeds with illegal Internet transition, Congress should sue now

Aug. 17, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement in response to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) decision to proceed with the Internet giveaway in violation of a congressional prohibition against doing so:

“The NTIA should not take another step towards transitioning the Internet Assigned Numbers functions to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. They are using prohibited funds right now that block the transition this year, violating federal law. That is because it is not only illegal to violate federal law, but to plan to violate it. These are reasonable grounds for Congress to ask a federal judge to enjoin NTIA from any further action, pending full hearing of the case.

“NTIA’s breaching of law to go forward with the Internet giveaway has been the subject of letters from House appropriators and the House and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairmen. These are serious charges. There would be little question of their standing to sue, as there is ample precedent for Congressional access to federal courts.

“To stop the illegal, unconstitutional Internet giveaway, Congress must also reassert its Article One responsibilities to block the transition in the upcoming continuing resolution. Ceding the Internet’s domain name system to an unaccountable global monopoly is not an option.”

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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ALG names Paul Gosar, Sean Duffy Congressmen of the Year

Aug. 15, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement naming U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) and U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) Congressmen of the Year:

“Few leaders on Capitol Hill have done more to defend Congress’ Article One power of the purse than Paul Gosar and Sean Duffy, who have truly earned the moniker Congressmen of the Year.

“Gosar has worked tirelessly to defund a large swath of President Obama’s agenda, including to defund implementation of the HUD regulation Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, an overreaching regulation that rezones neighborhoods along income and racial guidelines, and other defunds against sanctuary cites and IRS salary bonuses.

“Duffy has fought to protect the free and open Internet, and penned the original defund that prohibits NTIA from relinquishing oversight of the domain name system to the international community. Duffy also protected U.S. taxpayers from having to bail out creditors who bet poorly on Puerto Rican debt, sponsoring the legislation that restructured Puerto Rico’s $72 billion debt.

“Together, Gosar and Duffy are examples of true leadership in Congress, men who put their constituents, the American people, first, and who take their responsibilities under Article One seriously, and that is why they have been named Americans for Limited Government’s Congressmen of the Year.

“If there were 218 Paul Gosars and Sean Duffys in the House of Representatives, President Obama’s assault of Article One of the Constitution would have been stopped in its tracks.”

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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NTIA is violating the law with illegal Internet giveaway, and Congress must act

Aug. 11, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government today issued the following statement in conjunction with signing a coalition letter urging Congress to enforce its two-year prohibition on the transition of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN):

“Congress must take available action to stop the illegal Internet giveaway by NTIA, which has been prohibited for the past two fiscal years, and still, NTIA takes action pursuing the transition. NTIA used prohibited agency resources to compile a report stating that the transition proposal met the agency’s criteria, when the transition in itself is illegal. Congress must act by defunding it once again in the appropriations process, and getting an injunction is necessary if NTIA moves in the direction of transition on August 15 when it is expected they will not announce any contract renewal with the current government vendor over the IANA function, ICANN.”

Attachments:

Coalition letter urging Congress to enforce prohibition on Internet giveaway, Aug. 10, 2016 at http://docs.techfreedom.org/Coalition_Letter_IANA_8.10.16.pdf

Letter to NTIA warning against illegal Internet giveaway, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), June 27, 2016 at https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/2016-06-27%20GEG,%20Goodlatte%20to%20National%20Telecommunications%20and%20Information%20Administration%20(IANA%20Transition).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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DOJ action against Baltimore police part of national takeover of local police

Aug. 10, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government today issued the following statement in response to findings by the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division against the Baltimore Police Department:

“The courts in Baltimore have already found that Baltimore police were not guilty of any criminal wrongdoing in the death of Freddie Gray. The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division reopening and pouring salt in this wound is a travesty both for the people of Baltimore, and for law enforcement officers across the country who risk their lives every day to keep the peace. If not for the DOJ’s callous politicization of incidents in Ferguson and Baltimore, communities and police might have already come together in an honest dialogue on how to prevent future tragedies. Unfortunately, President Obama would rather attempt to score cheap political points with key voting constituencies than to allow reconciliation.

“The DOJ action in Baltimore is just the first step by the Obama administration to federalize police activity in that city. Eventually, this will become a federal court order consent decree, where the DOJ will sue Baltimore, and the city will settle without contest, agreeing to federal regulation, as has been done in cities across the nation. This regime has been endorsed by a representative of the UN Human Rights Council, and involves DOJ entering into consent decrees with cities to regulate every aspect of policing, including searches, stops and the use of force. This is the nationalization of local policing done through judicial fiat that Congress would never approve.

“What is truly sad is that after almost 8 years in office President Obama continues to be the divider in chief, seeking political gain from creating discord.”

Attachments:

Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, Special Litigation Section and Matters, Law Enforcement Agencies at https://www.justice.gov/crt/special-litigation-section-cases-and-matters0#police (Includes federal court orders against cities regulating local police)

UN Backs Secret Obama Takeover of Police, By Robert Romano, Aug. 5, 2016 at http://www.lifezette.com/polizette/un-backs-secret-obama-takeover-of-police/

Statement by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association at the conclusion of his visit to the United States of America, July 27, 2016 at http://freeassembly.net/news/usa-statement/

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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Trump sounds Second Amendment alarm on Clinton judicial appointments

Aug. 10, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement in response to Donald Trump’s statement that “Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the Second Amendment. By the way, if she gets to pick… if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is. I don’t know”:

“Donald Trump is right about one thing. Hillary Clinton will put judges on the bench who want to abolish the Second Amendment individual right to keep and bear arms via judicial decree. And there will be little anyone can do to stop it. By the end of Hillary Clinton’s first term in office, two out of every three federal judges will have been appointed by Democrat presidents. Who knows how many Supreme Court justices she will appoint? But her aim is clear. She will appoint judges who will overturn D.C. v. Heller, a ruling that would strip Americans of their rights—and maybe even their guns.

“Noting how dangerous banning guns might be is not the problem. Undermining the Second Amendment and eroding what is a vital check against federal power is what is truly dangerous. If we ignore this fault line in the Bill of Rights, our society could be flirting with catastrophe. Hillary Clinton, Democrats and their war on guns is far more provocative — and dangerous — than anything Trump might say about it, and that’s the truth.”

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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