Skip to Content

Obama Administration Preparations to Give Away the Internet Violate Federal Law

Cruz, Lankford, Lee, and Duffy maintain Internet transition is illegal

June 9, 2016

  |  

202-228-7561

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) today issued a joint statement following the Obama administration’s announcement that the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers’ (ICANN) proposal to end U.S. oversight of the Internet is satisfactory. The members of Congress maintain that the Obama administration has violated federal law by undertaking preparations to give the Internet away to foreign governments.

“Today’s announcement by the Obama administration is a clear indication that it has flagrantly violated federal law,” Cruz, Lankford, Lee and Duffy said. “This is the latest step in a troubling series of steps that the administration has taken to relinquish its responsibilities, and it should send a concerning message to every American. If the United States relinquishes its supervision of the Internet—which it has nurtured from inception to become the greatest source of information in human history—authoritarian regimes could try to undermine the new system of Internet governance and thereby threaten free speech around the world. Congress must enact the Protecting Internet Freedom Act and continue to fight for a free Internet.”

In 2014, Congress enacted legislation prohibiting the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) from using any funds to relinquish its responsibility to oversee the key operating functions of the Internet. The administration has violated that prohibition by funding projects intended to facilitate the proposed transition of responsibility to ICANN. 

For example, in March 2016, the Obama administration awarded a contract to the Berkman Center at Harvard University to provide NTIA with an independent review and assessment of the transition. This contract was awarded under the false premise that Congress had ‘mandated the review prior to NTIA transitioning its stewardship of certain Internet technical functions to the global multistakeholder community, which is to be completed by June 30, 2016.’ But Congress never mandated this action." 

###

Offices

Central TX

(512) 916-5834
300 E 8th
Suite 961
Austin, TX 78701
Email

 

North TX

(214) 599-8749
Lee Park Tower II
3626 N. Hall St.
Suite 410
Dallas, TX 75219
Email

Southeast TX

(713) 718-3057
The Mickey Leland Federal Building
1919 Smith Street
Suite 9047
Houston, TX 77002

Email

South/Cen. TX

(210) 340-2885
9901 IH-10W
Suite 950
San Antonio, TX 78230
Email

East TX

(903) 593-5130
305 S. Broadway
Suite 501
Tyler, TX 75702
Email

South TX

(956) 686-7339
200 S. 10th St
Suite 1603
McAllen, TX 78501
Email

West TX

Email

Washington, D.C.

(202) 224-5922
404 Russell
Washington, DC 20510
Contact

Generated in 0.116 seconds.