April 30, 2021 | Zach Graves

Francis Fukuyama on Tech and Democracy

I recently joined American Purpose editor-in-chief Jeff Gedmin for a discussion with Francis Fukuyama on technology and democracy. Watch the full video below. Francis Fukuyama is chairman of the editorial board of American Purpose. He is Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI), director of the Ford Dorsey Master’s in International

April 29, 2021 | Dan Lips

Former Comptroller General David Walker on GAO’s 100th Anniversary

In 2021, the Government Accountability Office is marking its 100th anniversary serving as Congress’s nonpartisan watchdog. Former Comptroller General David Walker led GAO from 1998 to 2008–initiating a series of lasting reforms to strengthen GAO’s value and return-on-investment for Congress and American taxpayers.  In a recent interview, I asked former Comptroller General Walker about his

April 26, 2021 | Zach Graves

The App Store Competition Debate, Explained

On Wednesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee is hosting a hearing on mobile app store competition, featuring representatives from Apple and Google, as well as several app developers. The hearing is convened by Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Mike Lee (R-UT), chair and ranking member of the Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust, and Consumer Rights. This hearing comes
Commentary, Publications

April 12, 2021 | Dan Lips

How Can Congress Improve GAO’s Performance?

An Interview with Deloitte Analysts William Eggers and Steve Berman             The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office issues more than a thousand recommendations to Congress and executive agencies each year to improve operations and increase fiscal efficiency. According to the Comptroller General’s annual estimates, the Congressional watchdog agency routinely achieves a return-on-investment of more than $100

April 6, 2021 | Zach Graves

Policy Update for January-March 2021

The following post was originally set as an email newsletter to our friends and supporters. Re: Lincoln Policy Team Activities for Q1 Dear friend of Lincoln: This year has ushered in a new administration, a new Congress, new policy and technology debates, and a new post-pandemic normal. At Lincoln Network, we have embraced the theme of “new” for

April 5, 2021 | Joel Thayer

Biden’s Bungling Broadband Plan

The Biden administration’s American Jobs Plan is riddled with issues, especially when it comes to a broadband deployment strategy. The plan seeks to impose 20th century command-and-control government mechanisms, akin to that of an electric grid, to a thriving and diverse internet ecosystem. Sadly, this plan will only leave consumers with less competition and higher

March 29, 2021 | Dan Lips

Former Senator Carl Levin’s Defense of the Filibuster

President Joe Biden’s announcement that he is open to reforming the Senate’s filibuster has energized calls from progressives to eliminate the Senate minority’s most powerful procedural tactic to block legislation or force compromise. But in his new memoir, Getting to the Heart of the Matter: My 36 Years in the Senate, former Michigan Senator Carl Levin

March 26, 2021 | Zach Graves

Testimony of Zach Graves to the U.S. House of Representatives, Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress

Click here to download a PDF of the letter Chairman Kilmer, Vice Chairman Timmons, and esteemed members of the Committee: Thank you for the opportunity to testify. My organization, Lincoln Network, works to bridge the gap between Silicon Valley and DC. This work entails building up and future-proofing our institutions with the capacity they need
Letters & Testimony

March 23, 2021 | Zach Graves

How Intra-Industry Conflicts Shape the Techlash

In 2013, The Economist coined the term “techlash,” predicting that CEOs of large tech firms would soon “join bankers and oilmen in public demonology.” In recent years, this has come to fruition. A majority of both Republicans and Democrats now support increased regulation of the tech industry. Additionally, half of Americans favor breaking up large firms like Amazon, Facebook, Apple, and Google.

March 19, 2021 | Dan Lips

Modernizing Oversight of Federal Spending Could Save Taxpayers Billions

Days before Congress passed the $1.9 trillion emergency spending package, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office issued a grim snapshot of the nation’s fiscal condition. CBO warned that the “growing debt burden could increase the risk of a fiscal crisis and higher inflation as well as undermine confidence in the U.S. dollar, making it more costly to finance public and private

March 16, 2021 | Joel Thayer

Stack neutrality: The holistic approach to net neutrality

In 2003, Tim Wu first coined the phrase “net neutrality” in his paper “Network Neutrality, Broadband Discrimination.” He defined a neutral network as “internet that does not favor one application over another.” Today, the Federal Communications Commission faces a choice: either regulate the entire internet ecosystem as a public utility or do not. The agency

March 4, 2021 | Zach Graves

The Promise and Perils of Interoperability

Majorities of both Republicans and Democrats now support increased regulation of the tech industry. Responding to this pressure, policymakers on both sides of the aisle have become increasingly critical of big tech, and are looking to advance new legislation. However, because their underlying grievances are different—with the right focusing on anti-conservative bias, and the left

March 4, 2021 | Dan Lips

Final Recommendations from the National Security Commission on AI

The global technology competition between the United States and the People’s Republic of China becomes more evident by the day.  President Xi Jinping is expected to call for a new 5-year plan this week for the PRC to achieve technology independence from the West at an annual meeting of the legislature.  On Monday, the Biden

February 26, 2021 | Zach Graves

The Call for Modernization in the US Senate

Dear Honorable Majority Leader Schumer, Honorable Minority Leader McConnell, Honorable Chairwoman Klobuchar, and Honorable Ranking Member Blunt: The COVID-19 pandemic, growing economic hardship for many American families, a national reckoning over racial injustice, and the January 6 siege of the Capitol have strained our democracy, underscoring the need for a strong, well-prepared Congress. While democratic
Letters & Testimony

February 24, 2021 | Zach Graves

Is Mandated Sideloading the Answer to App Store Deplatforming?

Smartphone app store policies have come into focus recently, following a series of recent conflicts between app makers and app store operators (principally Apple and Google). These include the removal of conservative-oriented social media platforms Parler and Gab, and the ensuing debate about balancing free speech and harmful content. There have also been numerous conflicts

February 19, 2021 | Garrett Johnson

Lincoln Network’s 2020 funding breakdown

Lincoln Network is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was founded in 2014 with a mission to help bridge the gap between Silicon Valley and DC from a pro-market, pro-innovation perspective. Lincoln’s founders recognized that the government needs, and the people it serves deserve, new ideas and technologies to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and responsiveness. We founded

February 17, 2021 | Zach Graves

Keep Congress Open to the People: Bipartisan Letter Rejecting Permanent Capitol Fencing

Dear Speaker Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Schumer, House Republican Leader McCarthy, and Senate Republican Leader McConnell: We write in firm opposition to the proposed enclosure of the U.S. Capitol with permanent security fencing. The Capitol and surrounding buildings must remain open to all engaged in the business of our democracy. Congress should be the shining
Letters & Testimony

February 17, 2021 | Jordan McGillis

Red Lines, Finish Lines, and the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics

Twelve months from now, two thousand athletes representing almost 100 countries are slated to march under their national flags into Beijing National Stadium to mark the opening of the 2022 Winter Olympics. Beijing National Stadium—the Bird’s Nest—was the focal point of the 2008 Summer Games and hosted that year’s opening ceremony, an awe-inducing tribute to

February 16, 2021 | Joe Kane

5G Needs Better Markets, Not More Buildout Requirements

Behind all those Super Bowl commercials about “5G” has been a years-long push to get the wireless frequencies needed for the next generation of wireless service ready for widespread use. One of the biggest recent steps in that direction is the Federal Communications Commission’s auction of licenses to operate in the lower portion of the

February 16, 2021 | Zach Graves

Bipartisan Coalition Asks Congress to Provide More Resources at FTC to Hire Expert Staff

The following letter was sent to the Hill on February 16, 2021. To discuss this issue further, please contact: Charlotte Slaiman, Competition Policy Director at Public Knowledge at; Chris Riley, Senior Fellow at the R Street Institute at; and Zach Graves, Head of Policy for Lincoln Network at Hon. Chris Van Hollen,
Letters & Testimony

February 11, 2021 | Joel Thayer

Petition to Expand Marketing Opportunities for Innovative Technologies

Click here to download a PDF of the letter Lincoln Network (“Lincoln”) writes to the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) to provide its comments in the above-captioned proceeding. Lincoln is a non-profit organization that seeks to bridge the often-siloed discussions between policymakers in Washington, D.C., and technologists in Silicon Valley so as to advance
Letters & Testimony

February 8, 2021 | Zach Graves

Strengthening American Democracy by Increasing Legislative Branch Capacity

Click here to download a PDF of the letter Dear Chair DeLauro, Chair Leahy, Ranking Member Granger, and Vice-Chair Shelby: On behalf of the undersigned individuals, civil society organizations, and industry groups, we urge you to increase the share of discretionary funding available for the Legislative branch both to address the historically diminished resources available
Letters & Testimony

January 28, 2021 | Zach Graves

Returning Science and Technology Assessment to Congress

The shuttering of the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) in 1996, along with contemporaneous cuts to Congress’s policy capacity, created a deep institutional gap in the formation of science and technology (S&T) policy in the United States. A quarter century later, in the wake of a middling response to the COVID-19 pandemic, eroding military superiority,

January 28, 2021 | Alexiaa Jordan

Expert Advice for the Biden Administration’s Approach to Semiconductor Policy

Over the past four years, the semiconductor industry has focused on U.S. trade policy with China. Congress and the Trump Administration strengthened federal laws to restrict foreign investment, control technology transfer, and established new federal research incentives. This pattern looks to be continuing as President Biden’s nominee to lead the Department of Commerce committed to

January 26, 2021 | Dan Lips

The Biden Administration Must Answer China’s Semiconductor Challenge

President Biden’s nominee for Commerce Secretary testified to Congress today that the new administration will be firm in responding to China’s unfair trade practices. Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo told the Senate said the administration will “take aggressive trade enforcement actions to combat unfair trade practices from China and other nations that undercut American manufacturing.”

January 20, 2021 | Dan Lips

Questions for Biden’s Choice for Homeland Security

Alejandro Mayorkas, President-elect Joe Biden’s choice to be secretary of homeland security, brings significant experience to the role, having worked as deputy secretary during the Obama administration after serving as director of Citizenship and Immigration Services. But his confirmation to that office came while he was under inspector general investigation for allegations of preferential treatment

January 1, 2021 | Zach Graves

Policy Update for November-December 2020

The following post was originally set as an email newsletter to our friends and supporters. Re: Lincoln Policy Team Activities for November-December 2020 Dear friend of Lincoln: 2020 is coming to a close, but it has left us all with many questions and urgent policy decisions that need to be made to secure the future. At

December 16, 2020 | Dan Lips

Rethinking the Future of US Cybersecurity After the Latest Data Breach

5 Questions National Policymakers Should Be Asking  This week, IT-firm SolarWinds announced that it had likely suffered “a highly sophisticated, targeted and manual supply chain attack by an outside nation state,” which put the information systems of 18,000 of its customers, including federal agencies, at risk. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency at DHS issued

December 16, 2020 | Dan Lips

Why Congress and Federal Agencies Must Improve State and Local Governments’ Cybersecurity Risk Management

Click here to download a PDF version of the paper. State and local governments have purchased commercial off-the-shelf technologies with known vulnerabilities that federal agencies have banned. Five years after Congress passed bipartisan legislation to strengthen information sharing between the federal government and its partners, federal agencies could do more to support state and local

December 8, 2020 | Joel Thayer

FCC Moving to Update Rules for Marketing and Importation Equipment Is Good for 5G and IoT

The United States’ success in the race to 5G is critical, but enabling the Internet of things (IoT) ecosystem is equally important. This Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) in particular has made considerable efforts to expedite the deployment of 5G networks, either through reducing  barriers to building infrastructure or through opening up key spectrum