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How Democrats Can Win by Losing on Net Neutrality: QuickTake Q&A
10 January 2018, 12:46 | Francis Delgado
Ed Markey Verified account @SenMarkey
"Supporting Net Neutrality should be a no-brainer for members of Congress, whose constituents from across the political spectrum are united in their opposition to the Trump FCC's attack on the open internet". And the pro-net neutrality group Fight for the Future said last week it plans to rally opposition to any lawmaker who votes against the CRA.
Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Democrat from Missouri announced Monday she will be the 30th co-sponsor of a bill that will use the Congressional Review Act to reverse the FCC's vote to dismantle the net neutrality rules.
Without those rules, providers will be free to block customers from accessing rival services or slow down their access to Netflix, for example, as long as they tell customers what they're doing - though the Federal Trade Commission is supposed to watch for severely anticompetitive moves.
Unfortunately, as a press conference held on Tuesday morning in Washington DC made plain, political support for the measure is nearly entirely thanks to the fact that Democrats feel they can use it to win votes in the midterm elections in November this year. A University of Maryland poll from December 2017 found that more than 83 percent of voters favor keeping the rules, including 75 percent of Republicans, 89 percent of Democrats and 86 percent of independents.
Ed Markey Verified account @SenMarkey
With the 30 votes, the CRA resolution will receive a full vote in the Senate. "IA 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". Unfortunately, Markey's bill still has to pass the House and be signed into law by President Trump, both unlikely to happen.
Schumer and other Democrats think net neutrality will be a big issue in the 2018 midterm elections.
Despite an FCC repeal, net neutrality apparently does not want to go quietly. The lawsuit will be filed by companies like public advocates such as the Free Press, the state Attorney General and companies such as Etsy. In the days before the FCC's vote last month, the online giants took few overt steps to voice opposition to repealing the rules.
In fact Facebook has actively worked against net neutrality in many countries like India as it looks to dominate advertising in many developing markets.
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