Tech Policy

Net neutrality is bad policy for Maine and the nation

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In our modern day and age, roughly nine out of 10 American adults use the internet. They depend on this technology for many aspects of their lives. From small business owners to rural farmers, the internet impacts all people and facets of the marketplace. It has become the key to remaining well-informed, connected and competitive, and without it, opportunities would be diminished and innovation stifled.

The internet as we know it is faster and better than ever before. It has become a tool for entrepreneurship and a catalyst for change technologically, digitally and beyond. Over the past three decades, the internet has spurred unprecedented innovation and economic growth. The increased speeds and greater accessibility have made new technologies like telemedicine and precision farming – practices that are becoming increasingly utilized and enable more specialized work – a reality.

The advances that the internet has birthed are truly remarkable and impact our lives every day. In every part of our lives, connected technology revolutionizes how we interact – with others, with businesses, the marketplace and with the world in which we live. It propels new ventures and fosters technological advancements in health care, education, defense, transportation, agriculture and many other industries, impacting career growth nationwide.

A free and open internet is critical to unlocking our economic potential, as the internet is one of the most important drivers of the U.S. economy. With practical legislation in place, our internet is free and open, allowing the digital marketplace to thrive. However, big government politicians like Nancy Pelosi want to take that away from us and impose outdated regulations designed for depression-era monopolies on our 21st century internet. This will lead to rapidly decreasing investment in technology and stifled innovation. Currently, consumers are protected while allowing the private sector to thrive, but this can only be the case with limited government intervention.

As a Mainer, I know the ways in which connected technology impacts our lives. Better broadband access means improved health care outcomes, more innovation and fewer costs for small businesses. I am grateful for the unbridled innovation that the internet contributes to my day-to-day life. Small things like daily routines to larger things like running businesses are all streamlined and more efficient because of the internet.

If Washington imposes burdensome government regulations that interfere with our free and open internet, it will reduce the ease with which we can access it and impede future advancements, causing undue hardship for Mainers like myself. Overregulation of the internet will disincentivize job creation, increase costs for business owners and reduce productivity.

In Maine, we rely heavily on the internet to perform daily tasks, and we need our lawmakers to put us first and stand up against a government takeover of the internet. The robust, unparalleled growth and advancements that the internet has generated over the past few decades is a true testament to the success of capitalism and free-market policies, and this proposed overregulation is a slippery slope towards allowing the internet to become a government-run utility, pushing us one step closer to socialism.

We cannot afford to lose the internet to overregulation. It is the tool to unlock our future – we in Maine need it to remain free and open to all. Heavy-handed regulations will negatively impact innovation, businesses and daily life for all.

An open internet and connected technology are everything to me – I cannot imagine where I, and others like me, would be without them. If the government steps in, our lives will never be the same. We need our representatives in Congress – including Senators Collins and King – to put Mainers first and stand up against the big government politicians who want to take away our internet.

About Eric Brakey

Eric Brakey is a former Maine State Senator and the Founder of the Free Maine Campaign. In 2018, he ran as the Maine Republican nominee for US Senate.

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