This is works in tandem with the Democrat's venal Fairness Doctrine that seeks to shut down the few outlets right of center voices have to express their views. No radio station owner is going to run content that no one ants to hear (see Air America for the abject failure of liberal talk radio. Owners will switch formats. Business in business to make money. hello. ) Liberal fascism.
Today House Republican Leader John Boehner issued a statement indicating that Democrats are seeking to quash the right of Members of Congress to have free speech. According to the statement, the Democrats are looking at restricting Member content on websites outside the house.gov domain. Congressman Culberson is quickly becoming a "real time representative" by posting on Twitter.com, where he sends regular updates from the House floor and the halls of Congress, and on Qik.com, where he films and posts video updates on the Internet. This new technology allows him to bypass the mainstream media and shine sunlight into the darkest corners of Congress. If the Democrats strong-arm this rule, he would no longer be able to use these websites and our fundamental right to free speech will be taken away.
The following is Mr. Boehner's statement:
I’m writing to alert you to an attack on free speech that is making its way through Congress. This attack, which should concern activists of all political affiliations across the ideological spectrum, comes in the form of a new congressional rule that would prohibit Americans from viewing content published by Members of Congress on websites that are not “approved” by the Committee on House Administration, the panel that creates rules governing the internal operations of the U.S. House.
Millions of Americans today utilize free, unregulated and uncensored websites like YouTube on a daily basis to not only obtain information from their elected leaders about what’s going on in their government, but to also give feedback and easily share that information with others. The advent of new media technology has empowered American citizens with real-time information about the policy debates and actions being undertaken by Congress. This has increasingly forced Congress to become more transparent and made it easier for American citizens to hold their elected leaders accountable.
The Committee on House Administration is considering a new rule that could bring this trend to a screeching halt. The Committee is considering the adoption of new rules that would require outside websites such as YouTube to comply with House regulations before Members of Congress could post videos on them. Under the proposal, the House Administration Committee would develop a list of “approved” websites, and Members of Congress could post content only such websites.
If the proposed rule is adopted, the free flow of information over the Internet between Americans and their representatives will be significantly curtailed. Americans who currently use free websites like YouTube to obtain uncensored daily information about congressional policy debates will instead be forced to go to websites “approved” by the House Administration Committee in order to continue getting such information. This would amount to new government censorship of the Internet, by a panel of federal officials that is neither neutral nor independent.
House Republicans, led by Reps. Vern Ehlers (R-MI), Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and Tom Price (R-GA), have expressed their opposition to this attack on Internet freedom and proposed an alternative solution that would allow Members of Congress to continue posting content at sites of their choosing. I will continue to keep you updated as this situation unfolds.
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