Congressional Democrats Move to Overturn FCC's Halt of Net Neutrality

  • Congressional Democrats Move to Overturn FCC's Halt of Net Neutrality

Congressional Democrats Move to Overturn FCC's Halt of Net Neutrality

Orrin Hatch's downtown office Tuesday to demand he join 50 other US senators that have expressed their support of undoing recent federal changes to net neutrality rules.

As of Tuesday, all 47 Democratic senators had signed on to the resolution of disapproval, as well as two independents and one Republican, Sen. The other thing to keep in mind is that even if the bill were to pass the Senate with 51 votes, it will still have to pass through the House of Representatives.

The FCC, in a 3-2 party line vote, decided in December to repeal numerous agency's net neutrality rules, including those that prohibit internet providers from blocking or throttling of content or from selling "fast lanes" to companies to get speedier access to consumers. "Let's have a vote so you know where every single member of Congress in this country stands on your right to open internet access". Which is what Democrats, led by Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey, are attempting once again to do.

"Today's shortsighted efforts by some to substitute the drafting of smart, bipartisan net neutrality legislation with the blunt instrument of the CRA is neither pro-consumer nor pro-innovation", said Jonathan Spalter, president and CEO of the trade group USTelecom.

Markey also urged his Republican colleagues to join the "overwhelming majority of Americans" who support a free and open internet.

Net neutrality activists designated Tuesday as a "day of action" on net neutrality, with the aim of securing one more vote in the Senate. That is not what our our democracy is about, and it shouldn't be how our internet works. In order to force a vote on the Senate resolution, Markey said he will submit a discharge petition, which requires a minimum of 30 senators' signatures.

The commission in December adopted the proposal by Republican-appointed chairman Ajit Pai to end the so-called "net neutrality" rules adopted in 2015.

Fulton called the FCC's reversal of net neutrality "a radical rewiring of the internet" that hands control of the network to a few powerful internet service providers. Susan Collins backing the measure. Brown has previously shown support for net neutrality.

Net neutrality opponents scored a major victory last December when FCC voted 3-2 to have the laws repealed.

Last week, a coalition of 22 state attorneys general refiled legal challenges meant to block the Trump administration's repeal of net neutrality.

On Monday, Democratic lawmakers said using the power of the checkbook - essentially threatening to pull the state's business from non-neutral providers - would influence companies but stop short of regulating them, a move that could run afoul of the federal regulator.