Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Tomorrow-- Big Vote On Net Neutrality


As you probably know, Senate Democrats are going to force a vote of new neutrality tomorrow> The goal is to repeal anti-neutrality changes recently adopted by the Republican-controlled Federal Communications Commission. CNN reported that the repeal is backed by all 49 Democrats and Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and that it's expected to pass in the Senate tomorrow. The problem, of course, is in the GOP-led House. And even if it were to pass the House, Trump would never sign it.
Democrats argue the new rules give too much power to Internet service providers, whom they fear will throttle down Internet speeds for some websites and services while ramping it up for others who pay more for faster speeds.

"The internet should be kept free and open like our highways, accessible and affordable to every American, regardless of ability to pay" said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, in a statement announcing Democrats would force the vote, utilizing a rarely-used discharge petition. "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. A vote against this resolution will be a vote to protect large corporations and special interests, leaving the American public to pay the price."

Democrats are employing the Congressional Review Act, a law that allows Congress to repeal agency rules and regulations on a simple majority vote-- instead of a 60-vote threshold needed to break procedural hurdles on most legislation-- if lawmakers act within a narrow timeframe after an agency puts a rule into place. Republicans have used the same technique to reverse several Obama-era regulations.

While Democrats recognize they are unlikely to reverse the Federal Communications Commission's rule, they see the issue as a key policy desire that also galvanizes their base voters, a top priority ahead of the midterm elections.
Democrats running against House incumbents will have a perfect issue to clobber their opponents with in November. But even Democratic challengers in open seats are already gearing up to campaign on the issue. This is a memo Randy Bryce sent out yesterday in southeast Wisconsin which will be, since he frightened Paul Ryan into retiring, an empty seat. "83% of Americans from both sides of the aisle support Net Neutrality," he wrote, meaning this should not be a partisan issue– but Trump, Ryan, and their allies are making it one. Once the recent Net Neutrality decision goes into effect in June, there will be nothing to stop the handful of companies that control a majority of Americans’ access to the internet from slowing down content or blocking political opinions they disagree with,' said Communications Director Julia Savel. 'The free exchange of ideas on the internet is in jeopardy, and Ryan’s hand-picked replacement Bryan Steil has yet to figure out his position on this clear-cut issue. Tomorrow, senators will cast their vote to keep Net Neutrality or to side with corporate special interests. The people of Wisconsin’s 1st district deserve to know where Bryan Steil stands on Net Neutrality.'"

Goal ThermometerSam Jammal is also running in an open seat-- Orange Couny's CA-39, where the right-wing incumbent decided to retire-- and the primary is crowded with rich self-finders from other districts. Sam feels strongly about the issue and said this morning that "If we really are going to build an economy that competes globally and fosters innovation, then we need net neutrality. We have created so many jobs because of a free and open internet. Its reckless that the Trump Administration sought to eliminate net neutrality and goes to show just how bought off his Administration and Congressional Republicans are. They would rather help a few big telecoms over the thousands of small businesses and entrepreneurs who made the internet what it is today. Given our real challenges we will soon face with regards to jobs as a result of automation and artificial intelligence, our elected officials should be doing all they can to supporting innovation. This starts with supporting net neutrality."

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At 6:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just pretend that the "democrats" will crumble. If for some reason they don't, then you will be pleasantly surprised by them for once.

At 8:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wrong. The senate 'craps know that the house will take Comcast and att's money and won't affirm their symbolic boondoggle.

The senate 'craps get to appear to their idiot electorates as though they give a shit. And the ISP corporations get what they paid for. Everybody wins.

Well, except consumers... and principles. But they never counted anyway.


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