Today an enormous number of Republican legislators are bailing on SOPA, declaring it a danger to free expression. As of this writing 26 out of the 29 legislators who came out against SOPA today are Republicans. Even before today, a lot of the hard-core anti-SOPA voters were fiscal and social conservatives. Presidential candidate Ron Paul and his Senator son, Rand Paul both opposed it along with Justin Amash, Aaron Shock, Michele Bachmann, and budget-slasher Paul Ryan.
This morning the floodgates really opened. Tea Party favourite Marco Rubio came out against it, Jim DeMint tweeted against it, and Arizona’s Ben Quayle even took his name off the list of co-sponsors.
Some of the bills biggest supporters are from the liberal wing of the Democratic party. Just look at the list of Senate co-sponsors. They include Chuck Schumer, Barbara Boxer, Dianne Feinstein and Al Franken.
Of course the lines aren’t entirely that neat. Nancy Pelosi, one of the House’s leading liberals opposes SOPA. And John McCain is still listed as a co-sponsor.
But if SOPA is defeated, the internet will be in the odd position of having to thank conservatives first.