- ‘Welcome to the edge of freedom’: Biden’s boots touch down in DMZ
- Obama: Hole U.S. ‘digging out of’ requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
House moves ahead with cybersecurity bill
WASHINGTON (AP) - House Speaker John Boehner on Thursday defended a cybersecurity bill as a common-sense approach to stopping electronic attacks on critical infrastructure and companies. He rejected the Obama administration’s criticism that the measure could lead to invasion of Americans’ privacy.
“The White House believes the government ought to control the Internet, government ought to set standards and government ought to take care of everything that’s needed for cybersecurity,” Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters at his weekly news conference. “They’re in a camp all by themselves.”
The administration has threatened to veto the bill, which the House debated and planned to vote on Thursday. The bipartisan bill would encourage corporations and the government to share information collected through the Internet to thwart attacks from foreign governments, terrorists and criminals. The information sharing would be voluntary.
The administration says the bill falls short of preserving individual privacy by failing to set security standards and broadly allowing liability protection for companies that share information. The administration wants the Homeland Security Department to have the primary role in overseeing domestic cybersecurity.
“Cybersecurity and privacy are not mutually exclusive,” the White House said.
During the debate, Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., complained that the measure would allow companies to share information with the government, including the National Security Agency. The legislation, Polis said, would create a “false choice between security and liberty.”
Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said the bill was necessary to stop the potential threat of computer attacks from Russia, China, North Korea and Iran. He disputed claims that the measure would lead to spying on Americans.
“There is no government surveillance, none, not any in this bill,” said Rogers, R-Mich.
Rogers and the committee’s top Democrat, Rep. C.A. “Dutch” Ruppersberger of Maryland, planned to add an amendment that would limit the government’s use of threat information to five specific purposes: cybersecurity; investigation and prosecution of cybersecurity crimes; protection of individuals from death or serious bodily harm; protection of minors from child pornography; and the protection of national security.
Still, some liberals and conservatives adamantly opposed the measure.
“Until we protect the privacy rights of our citizens, the solution is worse than the problem,” said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas.
A coalition of groups and individuals, including the American Civil Liberties Union and former Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., expressed concern that the legislation would allow companies that hold personal information about an employee to share it with the government. The information could come from Internet use or emails and be relayed to defense and intelligence agencies, such as the NSA.
“Once in government hands, this information can be used for undefined `national security’ purposes unrelated to cybersecurity,” the groups wrote lawmakers.
White House and outside groups’ opposition is not expected to derail the House bill, which has bipartisan support.
The administration backs a Senate bill sponsored by Sens. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, giving Homeland Security the authority to establish security standards.
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Obama administration issues permits for wind farms to kill more eagles
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- PRUDEN: British press horrified as London's new mayor dares to proclaim the truth
- Obama: Hole U.S. 'digging out of' requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- Rush Limbaugh: Obama trying to make Mandela death about himself
- Craigslist killers: Police say newlyweds stabbed man for thrills
- NYC alarms with notice: Immediately surrender your rifle
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
A stat-head’s outlook, direct from his worn in couch cushion.
Classical music and the performing arts: news and reviews you can use.
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
White House pets gone wild!