One week ago I had wrote to my two Senators and U.S. Congressman concerning my worries about the SOPA/PIPA legislation. I had assumed that Americans
actually speaking up on legislation was still not going to change the way they were going to vote. Assessing the situation as almost futile I sent
them a message anyway, thinking that it cannot hurt to at least try and influence their decision. Well, it turns out my Senators listened to the
people when they spoke.
Senator Marco Rubio
drops support of PIPA bill he co – sponsored
Legislators run for the exits on SOPA/PIPA after
US Senate race positions on SOPA:
not a lotta love
John Mica official statement
“As the information superhighway evolves, we cannot overreact with legislation, like SOPA, that overreaches in its scope and restricts online
use. I support legislation that accomplishes the goal of protecting Americans’ intellectual property rights but does not infringe on an open and
So it turns out that both of my Senators and my Representative in the U.S. House of Representatives do not support either SOPA or PIPA now. This was a
fantastic protest staged by internet websites and the American people who wrote en masse to their representatives. Today Senator Marco Rubio wrote me,
presumably a mass email to everyone who wrote him, and explained his position on the legislation:
Dear Mr. --------,
Thank you for contacting me regarding Internet piracy legislation. I would like to take this opportunity to address your concerns on this important
As you may be aware, on May 12, 2011, Senator Patrick Leahy (VT) introduced the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of
Intellectual Property Act of 2011 (PROTECT IP/ PIPA, S. 968), which is meant to curb the online theft of intellectual property, much of which is
occurring through rogue websites overseas in China. As a senator from Florida, a state with a large presence of artists, creators and businesses
connected to the creation of intellectual property, I have a strong interest in stopping online piracy that costs Florida jobs. It was with this in
mind that I was previously a co-sponsor of the PROTECT IP Act. I believe it's important to protect American ingenuity, ideas and jobs from being
stolen through Internet piracy. However, we must do this while simultaneously promoting an open, dynamic Internet environment that is ripe for
innovation and can promote new technologies.
Last summer, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed the bill unanimously and without controversy. Since then, I've heard from a number of Floridians
who have raised legitimate concerns about the impact this bill could have on Internet access, as well as a potentially unreasonable expansion of the
federal government's authority to impact the Internet. Congress should listen and avoid rushing through a bill that could have many unintended
Therefore, I have decided to withdraw my support for the PROTECT IP Act. Furthermore, I have encouraged Majority Reid to abandon his plan to rush the
bill to the floor. Instead, we should take more time to address the concerns raised by all sides, and come up with new legislation that addresses
Internet piracy while protecting free and open access to the Internet. Please know that I will remain mindful of your concerns should this, or similar
legislation, such as the Stop Online Privacy Act (SOPA, H.R. 3261), come before the Senate for consideration.
Again, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me. It is an honor and privilege to serve the people of Florida. If I can be of any
further help to you, please do not hesitate to contact me.
United States Senator
Well, I am glad they actually listened.