May 27, 2018

Brown: Net Neutrality Vote Could Bring More Pressure on GOP

16 May 2018, 10:42 | Cesar Cruz

Jason Reed The Daily Dot

Jason Reed  The Daily Dot

Sen. Ed Markey, who is now leading of the effort to save Net Neutrality, stated that the possibility of President Trump blocking the movement if it passes the necessary votes would create a "political firestorm", however the controversial world leader hasn't shied from such backlash in the past.

The resolution has drawn the support of half of all senators, but it needs a majority vote to pass.

Democrats in the U-S Senate are forcing a vote this week to undo the Trump Administration's repeal of Obama-era net neutrality rules, less than a month before that repeal is to go into effect.

Though the vote on the measure has been expected for months, its outcome is uncertain. Hassan says she's hearing from thousands of constituents who are in support of restoring the regulations.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who voted in favor of the new rules, has argued that they will support future innovation and dismissed opponents' claims that they could impact internet services. In a tweet, Sen. "The repeal of net neutrality is not only a blow to the average consumer, but it is a blow to public schools, rural Americans, communities of color and small businesses".

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The resolution will seek to overturn a rule voted on by the FCC in December that would eliminate most of its net-neutrality regulations.

The senator, who has offered a formal resolution to restore net neutrality rules under the Congressional Review Act - which allows lawmakers to reverse federal agencies' regulatory actions - said Democrats have successfully placed the measure on the chamber's legislative calendar, setting the stage for a Senate vote on Wednesday.

Net neutrality, which forces private companies to provide equal access to the Internet, is expected to be a major campaign issue Democrats will use in the 2018 midterm elections, not least for its importance to young people. While the name for the principle isn't that old, the basic idea predates the internet and has its roots in the telephone and telegraph networks and even older services. The latest version of the agency's rules, from 2015, barred internet service providers from blocking, slowing, or giving preferential treatment to particular online sites or services. That foggy concept has become in practice regulating the internet. It also hands off to the Federal Trade Commission the job of making sure the providers abide by the terms they've disclosed and to watch out for anti-competitive behavior on their part.

Despite surviving a court challenge from broadband industry groups seeking to overturn the rules in 2016, they came under fire again a year later - this time from the agency's new Republican leadership. One more would pass the bill, though it would still have to get through the House and the President's desk, making its prognosis poor.

A recent poll showed the majority of Americans across the political spectrum were in support of net neutrality.

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