The American people stopped Congress from passing disastrous so-called cybersecurity bills that would infringe on the free speech and privacy of internet users. Nothing short of amazing happened when Congress tried to ram through CISPA, SOPA, and PIPA. The defeat of these bills showed the power of grassroots activism as countless activists rose up and took action by calling their congressmen and spreading the word on social media.
Senator Joe Lieberman hasn’t been pleased.
Lieberman was the lead co-sponsor of the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 that failed to muster up the 60 votes it needed to overcome a filibuster in the Senate.
Now, according to the Daily Caller, Lieberman is pushing Obama to issue a cybersecurity executive order identical to the Cybersecurity Act of 2012:
In a letter to President Barack Obama Monday, Lieberman urged the administration to use the president’s ‘executive authority to the maximum extent possible to defend the nation from cyber attack.’
There’s a reason that the Founding Fathers were so adamant on a system of checks and balances to help ensure that one branch does not become too powerful.
But the Obama administration believes that it can simply bypass the legislative branch anytime they feel like it. Obama has passed a whopping 139 executive orders to date.
Unfortunately, it looks like Joe Lieberman may soon be getting his wish.
The Daily Caller reports that a “cybersecurity” executive order currently being written closely resembles Lieberman’s bill:
While President Barack Obama still needs to approve the order, Napolitano told senators Wednesday that the order is now ‘close to completion.’
It is believed to closely mirror the failed cybersecurity bill sponsored by independent Sen. Joe Lieberman and Republican Sen. Susan Collins.
While the exact details of the executive order are still unknown, it would be a huge mistake for Obama to sign an executive order implementing a misguided bill that failed to pass the Senate.
The broad language in the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 leaves the door wide open for abuse. It would set up a new government bureaucracy called the National Cybersecurity Council to govern cybersecurity for “critical infrastructure” and it could encourage companies to share more of our private information with the federal government.
This is problematic because it would allow the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to define what falls under the category of “critical infrastructure”. Since it is not known which industries fall under the DHS’s definition, it would essentially create a completely open-ended regulatory apparatus for internet security.
Rather than improving internet security, the multi-year process of creating government standards would halt private innovation in cybersecurity because no one wants to invest in something that may or may not meet government standards that have yet to be defined. No one is quite sure how much it will cost to implement these burdensome regulations. This bill will likely be a job killer because businesses could be dramatically impacted by the new costs imposed by the bill.
We must remain vigilant and stop any efforts by the federal government to control the internet.