After every election talking heads and political pundits chatter at length why voters behaved in a certain way. One certainty is that voters did not elect candidates who supported so-called “net neutrality.” CAGW has long held the view that “net neutrality,” contrary to its name, would stifle innovation and choice by unleashing government control of the Internet.
According to a November 8, 2010 article in The Wall Street Journal, “As a reminder of unpredictability in politics, consider what happened when the Progressive Change Campaign Committee last month announced that 95 candidates for Congress had signed a pledge to support ‘net neutrality.’ The candidates promised: ‘In Congress, I’ll fight to protect Net Neutrality for the entire Internet—wired and wireless—and make sure big corporations aren’t allowed to take control of free speech online.’ Last week all 95 candidates lost. Opponents of net neutrality chortled, and the advocacy group retreated to the argument that regulation of the Internet wasn’t a big issue in the election.”
While it is likely that these 95 candidates supported other unpopular policy positions, it can’t be ignored that there were other metrics leading into the election that made it clear that further government regulation of the internet wasn’t popular.
A September 23, 2010 poll conducted by Hart Research Associates of 800 likely voters found that 75 percent of respondents thought the Internet is currently working well and 55 percent thought the federal government should not regulate the Internet.
It now appears that CAGW is not alone in this belief. If this overwhelming disdain for “net neutrality” is any indication of what politicians and bureaucracies should expect for the future, big government may soon be on the endangered species list.