Al Franken: Ted Cruz doesn’t understand net neutrality

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Annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Held In D.C.

Ted Cruz. From Getty Images.


WASHINGTON — Sen. Ted Cruz, who argued net neutrality is like “Obamacare for the Internet” doesn’t understand the issue, according to Sen. Al Franken.

The Minnesota Democrat suggested Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the analogy makes no sense and said that Cruz, a Republican from Texas, doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

“He has it completely wrong and he just doesn’t understand what this issue is,” Franken told CNN’s Candy Crowley on Sunday.

At issue are proposed “fast lanes,” or opportunities for big companies to pay Internet providers more money to make their web sites operate at a quicker speed.

But opponents, including President Barack Obama, favor keeping things equal — also known as net neutrality — so that wealthier businesses don’t have an advantage over smaller ones when it comes to paying for faster websites.

“ObamaCare was a government program that fixed something, that changed things,” Franken said. “This is about reclassifying something so it stays the same. This would keep things exactly the same that they’ve been.”

To prevent “fast lanes,” Obama urged the Federal Communications Commission to implement more regulations–something Republicans don’t want.

Cruz said last week on Facebook that net neutrality is “the biggest regulatory threat to the Internet.”

“In short, net neutrality is Obamacare for the Internet,” he continued. “It puts the government in charge of determining Internet pricing, terms of service, and what types of products and services can be delivered, leading to fewer choices, fewer opportunities, and higher prices for consumers.”

Responding to Franken’s comments, Cruz’s communications director said Monday that “allowing the government to regulate the Internet as a public utility would freeze innovation and prevent progress.”

“It’s radical and extreme to put the future of the Internet in the hands of a 5-member FCC panel influenced by lobbyists and politicians and unaccountable to regular, working Americans,” Amanda Carpenter said, while also pointing to a recent speech by Cruz about net neutrality.

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  • Skip

    Ted Cruz, as leader of the 2013 Federal Government Shutdown, should figure out how to pay back the 25 billion of taxpayers money he wasted. Why Ted? You went to a good school, but you’re an idiot.

  • Ricardo

    As much as I don’t like Ted Cruz, I can’t stand Al Franken. The man’s a pompous blithering nincompoop. What Cruz did was use a simile. Now, for those who don’t know what a simile is:

    1.a figure of speech involving the comparison of one thing with another thing of a different kind, used to make a description more emphatic or vivid (e.g., as brave as a lion, crazy like a fox).

    Do you understand this concept? He’s comparing Net Neutrality to Obamacare, not because they are exactly alike, but because there is something similar about the two. Government control. For those who don’t see something completely wrong with this, you might want to think of the goverment agencies that screw everything up. IRS, FCC, CIA, FBI, USPS (only quasi-government, but still), TSA, FDA, NSA, NASA…. Hell, think of any initials you like, there’s likely an agency that uses it, adthey are likely abusing tax-payer dollars to fund trips to Las Vegas and throwing big prostitute filled bash on your expense.

    • Jason

      Wow, a little angry there Ricardo! Please define simile and then ask if I understand the concept, oh wait, you did. Are you sure he was using it as a simile, I don’t know if Ted Cruz is that smart, do you know the context? And while many people don’t like him, Al Franken, is one of the smartest and thoughtful speakers in congress.

  • Tim Westcott

    Just what we need the government overegulating and screwing up another industry like they always inevitably do. And always under the guise of more freedom and security when in fact the opposite is ALWAYS the result.

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