Sponsors drop their support for SOPA and PIPA
Several US politicians have dropped their support for both SOPA and PIPA anti-piracy bills after the mass online protests yesterday.
Co-sponsors of the PIPA bill Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Roy Blunt of Missouri have now withdrawn their co-sponsorship of the bill with Blunt calling it "deeply flawed".
Rubio elaborated on his decision: "I have a strong interest in stopping online piracy that costs Florida jobs. However, we must do this while simultaneously promoting an open, dynamic internet environment that is ripe for innovation and promotes new technologies. Therefore, I have decided to withdraw my support for the Protect IP Act. Furthermore, I encourage Senator [Harry] Reid to abandon his plan to rush the bill to the floor."
Blunt added: "The right to free speech is one of the most basic foundations that makes our nation great, and I strongly oppose sanctioning Americans' right to free speech in any medium - including over the internet."
Senator for Utah Orin Hatch also withdrew his support for PIPA saying that there were "legitimate vocal concerns" and the bill was "not ready for primetime".
These three high-profile withdrawals takes the number of senators changing position on the PIPA bill to a total of 13 11 Republicans and 2 Democrats.