On Wednesday evening Congressman Goodlatte held another “Facebook Live” event during which he again avoided direct contact with his constituents and responded to a handful of selected questions submitted by viewers via Facebook.
Only two of the questions– the first two– were in any way challenging.
The first was actually two questions, and Goodlatte answered neither. They dealt with Goodlatte’s vote in favor of a resolution in Congress allowing internet service providers to sell and share personal information.
Members of Congress should represent their constituents’ best interests. How many of your constituents called or wrote asking that ISPs be allowed to sell their browser history without consent? Follow up question: how much money have ISPs contributed to your campaign coffers?
In fact ISPs like Comcast and Verizon have contributed tens of thousands of dollars to Gooldatte’s campaigns over the years, but he didn’t mention that. Instead he talked about how the regulations on internet privacy should be issued by the Federal Trade Commission rather than the Federal Communications Commission.
However The Washington Post noted:
[T]he FTC does not have the authority to punish Internet providers that violate its guidelines. That is because of a rule that leaves oversight of those companies to the FCC.
As a result, [the] vote may release Internet providers from the FCC’s privacy regulation, but the FTC would also be unable to enforce its own guidelines on the industry without new authority from Congress.
The next question also failed to receive a direct answer:
I’m concerned about Executive Order that two regulations must be dropped before a new one can be activated. As government regulations are not all equal, what guidance will Congress give to deciding which regulations to roll back?
Instead Goodlatte, without citing any examples, suggested there are countless regulations that are outdated and need to be removed. That may or may not be the case, but it doesn’t explain why an arbitrary rule requiring two regulations to be discarded for every new one added makes any sense.
Gooldlatte continued to endorse President Trump’s efforts to issue an executive order banning travel ban from six Muslim-majority countries, while acknowledging that the first order in January should not have included Green Card holders. However at the time, Goodlatte fully endorsed that misbegotten order and even proudly took credit for allowing his Judiciary Committee staff to help write it.
Goodlatte also insisted that Congress would eventually act to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. And while noting the burden of high medical costs on low-income people, he defended the heartless refusal of Republicans in the Virginia House of Delegates to expand Medicaid under the ACA and provide health insurance to 400,000 working Virginians.