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FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR

John McCain and the Internet

It's a funny thing, what substitutes people use for having a record.

Revisiting a tactic that didn’t come off too well the first time when George Soros tried it, Obama is taking a shot at McCain as being too old to use email:

Of course, unlike Obama, if you want to judge McCain’s views on technology, you can look at his record. McCain spent seven years as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, during which he was continuously involved in debates, legislation and hearings on internet issues. In 1996, he blasted the Telecommunications Act as “nothing less than an elaborate influence-peddling scheme.” In the 2000 campaign, he touted his work on the Y2K Product Liability Reform Act and the Internet Tax Moratorium Act; he has continued to fight against taxation of internet commerce. McCain also introduced legislation dealing with internet encryption technologies. Obama may think he invented internet fundraising, but in 2000 McCain’s primary campaign raised millions of dollars over the web, a fundraising surge that was essential to keeping his campaign afloat; at the time, he was on the cutting edge of such tactics. In 2002, McCain introduced the broad-ranging “Consumer Broadband Deregulation Act of 2002″, a comprehensive bill that “would prevent localities from doing anything to interfere with the provision of any consumer broadband service by limiting local governments- rights-of-way compensation to ‘direct and actual costs reasonably allocable to the administration of access to, or use of, public rights-of-way.'” McCain has continued to press for broadband access at high-tech forums during his presidential run, and chosen as chief economic advisers a pair of high-tech executives, Meg Whitman of eBay and Carly Fiorina of Hewlett Packard.

You can certainly raise issue with the substance of McCain’s positions on a number of high-tech issues – many conservatives do – but to suggest that the man is unfamiliar with the tech lanscape is…well, like so many of Obama’s efforts to attack McCain, it depends on a certain suspension of disbelief.

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