SOPA: Proof that the Republican Candidates are Either Dumb or Bought (or both)

Ron Paul SOPA

Wednesday was a big day. It marked the first true convergence of political action and the internet in America. As millions of people learned about SOPA/PIPA after visiting Google, Wikipedia, Reddit, or any of the sites that went dark in protest of the internet censorship bills, none of the Republican candidates other than Ron Paul used the opportunity to denounce and oppose them.

These bills are not clear-cut along party lines but the sudden evacuation of 16 Republican supporters in the Senate versus 2 Democrat supporters is a good indicator that the increased government regulation leans to the left. For Paul to be the only candidate to take advantage of the press that a simple Tweet would bring leaves only 3 possible reasons:

  1. The other candidates are stupid for missing a clear opportunity to share in the overwhelming voice of the people
  2. The other candidates have already been bought by Hollywood and cannot risk losing future campaign dollars
  3. Both

President Obama has already come out against them. He knows that the passage of the bills in their current state would be political suicide; in fact, his staff recognized it before most in Washington and acted ahead of time with their statement of opposition.

Where is the opposition from the GOP presidential candidates? Is it so bad to agree with Obama that they felt it best to avoid the issue altogether? No. The only real conclusion is that they’re hoping the issue will disappear without them declaring one way or another.

Why Aren’t More Democrats Jumping Off the PIPA Bandwagon?

Stop SOPA

Note: While the Republicans seem to be leading in the Senate by changing their stance, it should be strongly noted that only President Obama and Ron Paul have opposed SOPA or PIPA amongst the presidential candidates.

We had always thought that SOPA and PIPA were wrong for America for more reasons than we could count. From a strictly conservative perspective, adding a new layer of regulations to anything is normally considered bad, but putting it over the internet makes it doubly dangerous. We expected to see a ton in congress jump ship and it made sense that the first batch to bail out would be Republicans.

We simply didn’t think that this many Democrats would hang on.

Of the 18 Senators who jumped ship before the end of the Wednesday Internet Blackout, 16 were Republicans. This is not a win for conservatives. The bill should never have been considered, let alone sponsored, by anyone claiming to appeal to the conservative right and their long-standing tradition of “hands-off” governing with less regulation.

What happened Wednesday is not enough to definitively end either legislation. The retreats that are occurring are, in some cases, strategic. In other words, we can expect the lukewarm opposition to be able to spin it later when a new, better planned series of similar bills are brought up.

It will happen. Even if SOPA and PIPA are DOA, they will return in another form. There’s simply too much money flowing from Hollywood to assume that the battle ends with a defeat of these bills. They’ll tone it down, make the wording less-ambiguous, and attempt to reintroduce a different version of the same concept.

While it’s important to keep an open mind, particularly when their battle against piracy is (for the most part) a righteous one, there must be extreme skepticism and complete scrutiny when this comes up again.

Will more Democrats jump ship in the coming days? Certainly. Can we trust either party to end this altogether. Absolutely not.

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Lorie WimbleLorie is a mother of 2 and is the voice of liberals for Conservative Haven. She lives in Annapolis, MD, and volunteers for the President Barack Obama Re-Election Committee.