The New Hampshire Congressional Delegation is split down the middle on controversial Internet piracy legislation, with Senators Shaheen and Ayotte coming out in favor of the Protect IP Act (PIPA) while Reps. Bass and Guinta are opposing the House version of the legislation, called the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).
Guinta posted his rationale for opposing the bill on his official Facebook page:
“Many Granite Staters have contacted me about their concerns regarding the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). After reviewing the legislation, I too have severe reservations regarding the bill. While we can work to protect intellectual property rights, it must be done in a way that does not weaken Internet security, disrupt growth – or most importantly – restrict your First Amendment rights. The current legislation does not meet this criteria.”
Bass, who was the last delegation member to articulate a position on the issue, released a statement Wednesday morning:
“No one questions that online piracy and counterfeiting are real problems with detrimental impacts to rightsholders, their employees, consumers, and the U.S. economy. However, I have serious concerns that the Stop Online Piracy Act goes too far in undermining the critical freedoms and functions of the Internet in the name of stopping this illegal activity and I am opposed to the bill as it is written.”
Meanwhile, conservative blogger Erik Erickson attacked Ayotte’s support for the legislation on his blog, RedState.com:
“The following are sponsors of Protect IP in the Senate originally introduced by Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont. Both Republicans and Democrats should pledge to unite and primary these members of the Senate, however much we may love them, for pushing such harmful legislation…If they don’t want to be primaried, they should stop sponsoring this crap. At the same time, I’m not going to primary my side unless the left primaries their side.”