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Sen. Cruz Exposes Threats to Internet Freedom During Hearing

Questions witnesses on administration's planned Internet handover

September 14, 2016

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – While chairing a Judiciary Subcommittee hearing to investigate the risks of President Obama’s proposed Internet handover, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today questioned Assistant Commerce Secretary Lawrence E. Strickling, an appointee of President Obama, and ICANN’s CEO and President Göran Marby. Sen. Cruz’s exchanges with these witnesses reinforced many of the free speech concerns that have been raised by members of Congress and the American people. Sen. Cruz also highlighted potential legal repercussions of this radical Internet proposal.

Key exchanges can be read below:

Sen. Cruz to Assistant Secretary Strickling: “Just to clarify your answer to the question, if the [Internet] transition goes forward…, the United States would be on the very same footing as would Russia or Iran or China?”

Assistant Secretary Strickling: “That’s correct…” 

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Sen. Cruz to Mr. Marby: “Is ICANN bound by the First Amendment?”

Mr. Marby: “To my understanding, no.” 

Watch Sen. Cruz’s first line of questioning with Assistant Secretary Strickling here. Sen. Cruz’s second line of questioning with Mr. Marby may be viewed here. Watch Sen. Cruz’s final exchange with these witnesses here.

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