Democratic House Whip Steny Hoyer Says Congress May Look To Pass Heavy Internet Regulation [VIDEO]

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Nick Givas Media And Politics Reporter
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House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer of Maryland refused to say if Congress is planning to regulate the internet, in light of Facebook CEO Mark Zukerberg’s testimony before Congress.

Several federal lawmakers gathered at the Newseum Wednesday in Washington, D.C., for The Hill sponsored event “Leadership in Action.” Hoyer was one of the featured guests and was asked if he knew of any plans in the House of Representatives to use the Facebook scandal to regulate an otherwise free and open internet.

He was unable to provide a straight answer and pivoted to Russia, after refusing to say if Congress would push for more online regulation.


“You have two very strong values here,” Hoyer said. “One is free speech and openness and transparency. The other is privacy. Both are important values.”

“Congress has a responsibility to try to protect both of those rights,” he stated. “You have to balance them. So I wouldn’t want to predict and you say — can I give your assurance — first of all I think we need to get through hearings. We are, the Russian invasion of our election — very, very serious. The non-security of information that people put on the web or on Facebook or on other devices. Perhaps they don’t expect that to be protected. But if that information is being used in effect to target them … for specific reasons, that is of concern to the public.”

He added:

So we are going to have to make a balance. We’re going to have to look at that and we don’t have all the information yet. And the technology is absolutely going to be with us in the future. We as a society, within the framework of our constitution, the First Amendment, protecting the ability to talk to one another and put information out — have to figure out how we can best do that. In protecting both of the values of privacy and open speech.

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