Tags: Net Neutrality | net neutrality | fcc | rules | gop | opponents | fight

GOP Mapping Multiple Fronts in Net Neutrality Fight

By    |   Monday, 02 Mar 2015 09:33 AM

The Federal Communication Commission's (FCC) vote in favor of new net neutrality rules has numerous hurdles to overcome as opponents map out legislative and legal challenges, The Hill reported.

"In the words of F. Scott Fitzgerald, never confuse a single defeat for a final defeat," FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai — one of the agency's two Republicans who voted against the rules — said after Thursday's vote, according to The Hill.

"There are multiple battles ahead and I believe that we will win the war."

The FCC's new regulations will, for the first time, regulate the Internet like a public utility as a way to enforce a level playing field for content providers.

But opponents, many of whom are Republican, insist the rules are an unlawful "power grab" that will pave the way to heavy-handed regulation while stifling innovation.

Just a few hours after the FCC's vote last week, a group of 21 House Republicans advanced a "fast track" vote to block the regulations using the Congressional Review Act, though a similar move in 2011 did not succeed, according to The Hill.

"OK great, so we go do that," Oregon GOP Rep. Greg Walden, chairman of a House subcommittee on technology, told C-SPAN. "We might, it is a tool in the tool chest. But that requires President Obama to sign it. So what do you think the odds are that he is going to sign the repeal of what he just forced down the FCC."

Speaker John Boehner insisted that Republicans will be working to undo the new rules.

"Republicans will continue our efforts to stop this misguided scheme," he said, according to The Hill.

Another legislative avenue is to try to prevent the FCC from directing any funds toward the implementation of the rules, The Hill said.

Still other Republicans are working on their own legislation that would ensure net neutrality but prevent the FCC from reclassifying the Internet and restrict other of its legal powers.

Regardless of which approach is pursued, the president will likely veto any efforts to undermine the FCC's new rules.

Supporters of the rules say they do not believe the efforts to overturn them will be successful.

"People will try all kinds of things, but I'm confident the message is going to be delivered to Capitol Hill that this is a very popular thing with the American public," Free Press president Craig Aaron said, according to The Hill.

Meanwhile, industry groups plan to seek redress in the counts, where they prevailed in 2010 against a proposed set of FCC rules.

Nevertheless, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has insisted that he believes the new rules would stand up to a court challenge.

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The Federal Communication Commission's vote in favor of new net neutrality rules has numerous hurdles to overcome as opponents map out legislative and legal challenges, The Hill reported.
net neutrality, fcc, rules, gop, opponents, fight
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2015-33-02
Monday, 02 Mar 2015 09:33 AM
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