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House Democrats launch petition to restore 'Net Neutrality'

The US Senate votes in favour of restoring the FCC's net-neutrality rules

The Senate has taken action to protect net neutrality rules set to end next month. The final nail hasn't been secured in the 2015 net neutrality regs just yet, but this vote doesn't really supply all that much oxygen either.

Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan voted with his party, against the resolution to undo the FCC's December decision. Senate Democrats believe their resolution - getting every Democrat on record in support of net neutrality and most Republicans on record against it - can turn what was once considered a wonk issue into a wedge issue this November. The CTIA, USTelecom and the NCTA earlier sent a joint letter to senators asking them to vote against the measure. Now, Net Neutrality activists have to collect signatures from a full majority of House members.

The FCC's existing net neutrality rules are set to end June 11 after the commission voted to gut the rules a year ago. The measure can not be filibustered in the Senate.

Although it's a major victory for activisists and consumer advocacy groups all around the country, the resolution must be passed by the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and signed by Trump in order for it to be enacted.

Net neutrality requires internet service providers (ISPs) like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon to give their users equal access to all internet content. Upending these rules means that, for a fee, ISPs can prioritize certain websites, allowing them to load more quickly on their users' devices, and slow down or even block other sites.

White House official mocked 'dying' Senator McCain - US media
Politico reporter Annie Karni tweeted that Sadler had called Meghan to apologize and did not get a warm reception. The official said Sadler, who is in charge of surrogate communications, meant it as a joke , "but it fell flat".

While people remain exclusively fixated on the telecom industry's attacks on net neutrality, the reality is companies like Comcast, Charter, AT&T and Verizon are busy trying to eliminate almost all federal and state oversight of their businesses.

"The Commission does not have the authority to compel broadband providers to offer service to particular customers at particular speeds or at particular locations, or to establish any other obligations in a cable television and telecommunications service merger related to the provision of broadband services". A 2017 Mozilla poll showed that 76 percent of Americans support net neutrality, including about 73 percent of Republican voters.

"I have voted to pass this resolution today so that we can reset the discussion and move beyond the politics at play here to what is really needed - lasting legislation that will provide certainty and move us beyond shifting regulatory standards that depend on who is running the FCC", Murkowski said.

Massachusetts Senators Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren were two of the 49 Democrats who backed the measure that would repeal changes to net neutrality. So it's no surprise they voted to reject Ajit Pai's decision to kill the internet as we know it. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) assumed the authority to regulate how broadband companies supply internet access such as charging differently for faster service.

If the bill doesn't pass, the new FCC rules repealing net neutrality will go into effect on June 11, but expect to see more challenges in court.

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