White House names new Internet policy adviser

US Vice President Al Gore's chief domestic policy adviser has been named as the likely successor to Ira Magaziner, who currently advises President Bill Clinton on a range of issues including Internet governance and electronic commerce.

Magaziner has indicated that he plans to step down from his post in January, according to White House aides. His duties will be filled by David Beier, who currently advises Vice President Gore on a broad range of issues related to the economy, technology, telecommunications, health care, crime and other matters, a White House spokesman said earlier this week.

The White House has yet to issue a statement on the matter, and it was not immediately clear if Beier will leave his current post to assist the president full time or assume both roles.

"Beier is taking over (Magaziner's) portfolio" of duties, White House spokesman Dag Vega said.

Magaziner and Beier did not return calls seeking comment.

Magaziner has nearly accomplished the task of moving Internet governance off the US government payroll and onto the plate of a non-profit body that has international representation. Last week the US government began transferring authority for administering Internet domain names and IP addresses from the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), a government contractor, to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

And the Clinton administration has presented its latest plan for electronic commerce, in which Magaziner was involved.

Beier joined the office of the vice president in April after working since 1989 in the government affairs office of biotechnology company Genentech, where he was involved with various issues related to the biotechnology industry including the extension of the R&D Tax Credit and the Orphan Drug Act.

Prior to that Beier was counsel to the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee where he played a role in the drafting and passage of several pieces of intellectual property legislation between 1981 and 1989. He cut his legislative teeth as an attorney for New York state in the criminal justice system.

He has co-authored several publications relating to intellectual property, as well as communications publications such as the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and Communications Privacy.

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