Ted Cruz on Technology
Republican Texas Senator
Ted Cruz (R): No. Net neutrality puts government in charge of pricing, products & services.
Beto O'Rourke (D): Yes. Rolling back net neutrality hurts democracy, the arts & innovation.
CRUZ: Apple should be forced to comply with the court order because under the Fourth Amendment, a search and seizure is reasonable if it has judicial authorization and probable cause. We should enforce the court order and find out everyone that terrorist at San Bernardino talked to on the phone, texted with, e-mailed. Apple doesn't have a right to defy a court order in a terrorism investigation.
RUBIO: Apple doesn't want to do it because they think it hurts their brand. Well, let me tell you, their brand is not superior to the national security of the United States of America.
KASICH: The president should have convened a meeting with Apple and our security forces. You lock the door and you say you're not coming out until you reach an agreement that both gives the security people what they need and protects the rights of Americans.
CRUZ: Well, the premise of your question is not accurate. I'm very proud to have joined with conservatives to reform how we target bad guys. And what the USA Freedom Act did is it did two things. #1, it ended the federal government's bulk collection of phone metadata of millions of law-abiding citizens.#2, it strengthened the tools of national security and law enforcement to go after terrorists. The prior program only covered a relatively narrow slice of phone calls, primarily land lines. The USA Freedom Act expands that so now we have cell phones, now we have Internet phones, now we have the phones that terrorists are likely to use and the focus of law enforcement is on targeting the bad guys. We need to focus on radical Islamic terrorists and we need to stop them before they carry out acts of terror.
CRUZ: Well, of course they have, and over the last six and a half years we've seen the consequences of the Obama-Clinton foreign policy. Leading from behind is a disaster. We have abandoned and alienated our friends and allies, and our enemies are stronger. Radical Islam is on the rise; Iran's on the verge of acquiring a nuclear weapon; China is waging cyber warfare against America. General Soleimani, the Iranian general is the head of the al Quds forces and directly responsible for the murder of over 500 American servicemen in Iraq--part of this Iranian deal was lifting the international sanctions on General Soleimani. The day General Soleimani flew back from Moscow to Iran was the day we believed that Russia used cyber warfare against the Joint Chiefs. We need a new commander in chief that will stand up to our enemies, and that will have credibility.
Ultimately, we finalized the terms of an important treaty on cybercrime, something that has become all the more important in our modern world. Whether it is the North Koreans hacking Sony to try to stop the release of a movie making fun of King Jong Un or ISIS hacking U.S Central Command's Twitter feed to spread Islamist propaganda, cyberattacks are becoming a greater and greater threat to our nation. And we will need serious tools, and cooperation with our allies, to protect ourselves going forward.
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A second, bigger problem is that PolitiFact often labels statements by conservatives "false" because the statements criticize liberals.
The third, and biggest, problem is that they regularly define left-wing opinion as an objective "fact." Anyone who disagrees with left-wing opinion is therefore a liar.
Companies like Facebook, Google, Yahoo and Yelp--through their Washington trade group, the Internet Association--are public backers of net neutrality. They together have praised Obama for endorsing an approach that might subject the Internet to utility-like regulation. All three Republicans, however, rejected the president's suggestion. Rubio hammered it as "government regulation of the Internet" that "threatens to restrict Internet growth and increase costs on Internet users." And Cruz lambasted net neutrality as "ObamaCare for the Internet" in a tweet that went viral--and drew plenty of criticism.
Cruz posted a video on YouTube that showed him explaining net neutrality and how it works. He asks his viewers what happens when you put regulations in place. "It froze everything place." Placing his hand on the landline phone he says "This is regulated." He then holds up a cell phone and says "This is not. Your smartphone, the Internet, the apps--the innovation is happening without having to go to government regulators and say, 'Mother, may I?' We want a whole lot more of this [holds up a cell phone] and whole lot less of this [points at the landline phone]."
In response to critics from the left, Cruz issued a statement stressing that he supports NASA's contributions to science and discovery: "We must refocus our investment on the hard sciences, on getting men and women into space, on exploring low-Earth orbit and beyond, and not on political distractions that are extraneous to NASA's mandate.
Cruz has continuously blamed the Obama administration for cutting funding for NASA. "One of the problems with the Obama administration is that it has degraded NASA. It has degraded for space exploration, degraded manned exploration because the Obama administration has undervalued that and shifted to funding other priorities," Cruz said in a statement following his appointment. "It shifted the funding to global warming pursuits rather than carry out NASA's core mission."
Opponent's Argument for voting No (Cnet.com): Online retailers are objecting to S.743, saying it's unreasonable to expect small businesses to comply with the detailed--and sometimes conflicting--regulations of nearly 10,000 government tax collectors. S.743 caps years of lobbying by the National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represent big box stores. President Obama also supports the bill.
Proponent's Argument for voting Yes: Sen. COLLINS. This bill rectifies a fundamental unfairness in our current system. Right now, Main Street businesses have to collect sales taxes on every transaction, but outbecause -of-state Internet sellers don't have to charge this tax, they enjoy a price advantage over the mom-and-pop businesses. This bill would allow States to collect sales taxes on Internet sales, thereby leveling the playing field with Main Street businesses. This bill does not authorize any new or higher tax, nor does it impose an Internet tax. It simply helps ensure that taxes already owed are paid.
Opponent's Argument for voting No: Sen. WYDEN: This bill takes a function that is now vested in government--State tax collection--and outsources that function to small online retailers. The proponents say it is not going to be hard for small businesses to handle this--via a lot of new computer software and the like. It is, in fact, not so simple. There are more than 5,000 taxing jurisdictions in our country. Some of them give very different treatment for products and services that are almost identical.
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