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Court Fight Over Net Neutrality Begins to Take Shape
09 January 2018, 12:41 | Harold Aguilar
Claire McCaskillVerified account @clairecmc
The mechanism requires a bill to get 30 co-sponsors, which forces a full vote on the Senate floor.
Those lawsuits won't be filed until the repeal hits the Federal Register sometime later this month, and will focus on how the FCC ignored the public, experts, and objective data as it rushed to kill popular net neutrality rules at the behest of AT&T, Verizon and Comcast.
Along with lifting the regulations that made it illegal for internet service providers to block or slow access to websites they did not own, net neutrality also prevents those providers from charging extra fees to customers, a "pay-to-play" arrangement in order to connect to certain websites or use applications that eat up large amounts of internet bandwidth. "[FCC Chairman] Ajit Pai has awakened the public, now Net Neutrality is a kitchen-table issue, and the outcry is only going to get louder".
Morfeld said the idea of reintroducing net neutrality rules at the state level received support from across the political spectrum.
"Any lawmaker foolish enough to be on the wrong side of history by voting against the free and open Internet will regret it come election day", Evan Greer, Fight for the Future campaign director, said in a statement Monday.
Missouri's Claire McCaskill is the latest senator to sign on to the nullification effort, according to Free Press, a consumer-rights group that supports the net-neutrality rules the FCC voted to repeal. The Congressional Review Act, which allows lawmakers to review new federal rules before they go into action, provides for Congress to vote on new rules decided by federal agencies.
Getting a vote is only part of the battle. Given that Republicans have nearly unanimously supported the FCC's new rules, the prospects for the CRA are dim. A University of Maryland poll last month found they were supported by 83% of Americans, including 75% of Republicans.
He said the association "intends to act as an intervenor in judicial action against this order and, along with our member companies, will continue our push to restore strong, enforceable net neutrality protections through a legislative solution".
He continued: "Regardless of party affiliation, all elected officials should stand with their constituents and restore the 2015 protections that protect free speech, choice and innovation online".
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