Should Congress restore net neutrality?

U.S. Capitol Building at dusk. Image by Shutterstock

It allows rules by federal agencies to be overturned within 60 legislative days of their introduction. If successful, a similar CRA in the House of Representatives would also need to pass before it reaches President Donald Trump.

But by forcing a vote, they force everyone in the Senate to take a position for or against the rules, including those who have attempted to stay "neutral" through silence. Susan Collins of ME, has joined Democrats and in the absence of Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine.

But even if the vote does pass, it faces stiff opposition with Republicans, who by and large support net neutrality - and the party now controls the House of Representatives.

Get ready if your daily website stops include Pornhub, Reddit or Tumblr: These popular websites - and many more - are going red in a last-ditch effort to save net neutrality.

"Instead of crafting forward-looking solutions that protect internet users and promote innovation ..." John Thune, South Dakota Republican, called the Democrats' push for a vote "political theater".

The rules, put in place in 2015 when the FCC was controlled by Democrats, prohibited internet service providers from selling faster delivery of certain data, slowing speeds for specific content and blocking or otherwise discriminating against any legal online material.

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It's also possible that nixing the deal pushes up oil prices, padding coffers in countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait. Certain exemptions and waivers can be negotiated, but the USA did not say what products or countries might qualify.

"Only in Washington is this a controversial issue, due to the influence of a few big cable and telecommunications companies like Comcast and Verizon who have the technical ability and financial incentive to give preference to some content online, including their own".

A vote by the Federal Communications Commission on December 14, 2017 will decide the fate of net neutrality.

Even with the plea of Berners-Lee, net neutrality is starting to look pretty dire in the US. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii. "People underestimate the passion of internet voters at their peril". The measure would then need a simple majority in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. According to an FCC announcement, (pdf) the FCC's comically and misleadingly-named "Restoring Internet Freedom" order will formally take effect on June 11, eliminating rules that have the bipartisan support of a huge majority of Americans (not to mention numerous people that built the damn internet). We have seen this in recent months as some in Congress and outside groups have shaped an ominous narrative surrounding the way we regulate the internet.

What Senate Democrats are doing with the CRA this week, however, is something different from what their Republican colleagues did previous year.

Senate Democrats introduced legislation Wednesday that would override the FCC and reinstate the 2015 regulation.

The new leadership of the FCC has given us an opportunity to do just that, by freeing the internet from outdated, monopoly-era regulations.

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