Thank You for Supporting S.J. Res. 34
April 6, 2017
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
Thank you very much for voting in favor of S. J. Res. 34, which President Trump signed into law yesterday.
The legislation provided for the disapproval of the privacy rules approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on October 26, 2016, related to internet service providers (ISPs).
As you know, it simply restores the status quo for privacy regulations that for decades covered all actors on the internet equally, rather than singling out one industry.
We appreciate your vote in favor of the bill despite claims that the passage of S J. Res. 34 means that ISPs can now sell information to the highest bidder.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman John Leibowitz, who was appointed by President Obama to that position, said that such comments are part of the “hyper-partisan” approach to privacy, and part of “a lot of sky-is-falling hyperbole.”
During his appearance on Saturday, April 1, 2017, on the Michael Smerconish program on CNN, Chairman Leibowitz also noted that the repeal of the FCC rules will allow regulators to apply a single set of privacy rules across the entire industry.
Indeed, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and Acting FTC Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen issued a joint statement on March 1, 2017, that they would work together to bring a consistent approach to regulating internet privacy.
They said that jurisdiction over privacy and data security related to broadband providers should go back to the FTC, and that every actor “in the online space should be subject to the same rules, enforced by the same agency.”
They added, “The federal government shouldn’t favor one set of companies over another … we will work together to establish a technology-neutral privacy framework for the online world. Such a uniform approach is in the best interests of consumers and has a long track record of success.”
Your vote for S. J. Res. 34 is in keeping with the principles of free markets, limited regulation, and the elimination of government waste, duplication, and overlap.
Congress will eventually consider legislation to both modernize telecommunications law and overturn the FCC’s Open Internet Order (net neutrality), which was approved by a partisan vote on February 26, 2015.
Since you voted in favor of S. J. Res. 34, we would expect and hope that you would also support legislation that would eliminate the FCC’s regulations on net neutrality.