Dems Inch Closer To Overruling FCC On Net Neutrality

By on January 16, 2018

Democrats say they now have 50 votes in favor of their resolution to overturn the FCC’s rollback of net neutrality protections that will essentially de-regulate the Internet.

The current tally leaves Democrats just one vote shy of actually passing the resolution of disapproval. It’s clear that the party has gone all in on net neutrality and looks poised to make it a significant campaign issue this fall should legislative efforts to save the protections fail.

From the Washington Post:

The resolution aims to overturn the FCC’s decision and prohibit the agency from passing similar measures in the future. It has the support of all 49 Democratic senators as well as one Republican, Sen. Susan Collins of Maine.

“With full caucus support,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), one of the lawmakers spearheading the effort, “it’s clear that Democrats are committed to fighting to keep the Internet from becoming the Wild West where ISPs are free to offer premium service to only the wealthiest customers while average consumers are left with far inferior options.”

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai led the effort to do away with net neutrality protections, arguing that they are too restrictive for business. Along with Democrats, 83 percent of Americans disagree with Pai and the GOP-led effort to roll back those consumer protections. Net neutrality regulations prevent service providers from favoring certain content over others and require them to provide fair and equitable access to the entire Internet for all their users.

Even if the Democrats are able to bring over one more senator to their cause, the resolution of disapproval would face a tough time in the House. Assuming it passes both chambers, the President would then have to sign the resolution for it to take effect.

The odds of all those things happening are pretty long, but Democrats are laying the groundwork for midterm campaigning with this move. They likely realize it isn’t going to go anywhere in the short term, but rallying behind net neutrality will pay long term dividends in terms of wrestling back control of Congress.