House E&C Committee considers Internet giveaway, but what about the defund that prohibits it?

March 17, 2016, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement encouraging the House Energy and Commerce Committee to focus on upholding the law that defunds the Internet Giveaway rather than enabling it in a hearing today that considers a proposal to end U.S. oversight of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions. Currently, there is an active prohibition against spending dollars to proceed with the Internet transfer in place:

“One of the few exercises of Congress’ constitutional power of the purse to stop bad policies has been against the Obama Internet giveaway the past two years, where no funds can be used to relinquish responsibility, or to even consider relinquishing responsibility, of the highly critical functions of assigning and routing IP addresses and domain names. It’s against the law and yet here we are having yet another hearing pretending the proposal can be considered. It cannot be.

“For all of House leaders’ talk of restoring Congress’ Article I authority, it is incredible that they do not appear even willing to acknowledge or defend that power when it is actually exercised. We look forward to the hearing, to see what members’ plans are to oversee the laws they enacted that prohibit any tax dollars from being used to consider the NTIA proposal they are now considering.

“Energy and Commerce Committee leaders are right. The Internet giveaway would be irreversible. There are no do-overs. That is why they should be hammering the NTIA on why they have been spending tax dollars to develop this proposal in violation of the twice-enacted Duffy defund that prohibits the Internet giveaway.”

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