House Passes Net Neutrality Bill, But Senate Likely Will Vote It Down

Sheri Evans
April 12, 2019

Now, the Senate bill to restore net neutrality rules "must go through the normal committee process, which is controlled by Republicans", unlike last year's CRA resolution, Ars Technica reported.

If the bill "were presented to the President", the White House statement said, "his advisors would recommend that he veto it".

It's not surprising that Trump is expected to veto the Democrat-led net neutrality initiative, but Monday's statement is one of the first direct comments from the White House on the legislation that is expected to easily pass through the House of Representatives on Tuesday.

The 2015 net neutrality regulations barred internet service providers like Comcast, Verizon and AT&T from blocking or slowing online traffic or from charging companies for faster lanes for consumers.

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Democrats in the House introduced the legislation last month, after taking control of the House of Representatives at the start of this year. According to a recent Comparitech poll, eighty percent of Americans say they support net neutrality. Still, the effort to restore net neutrality could give Democrats political points on consumer protections.

The Republican-led FCC repealed numerous net neutrality rules in 2017, setting off a battle in the courts, Congress and a number of state houses over what the rules of the road should be for internet providers.

The FCC in 2015 in reclassifying internet service said it had significant oversight authority, including the ability to set rates for internet service, but said it was opting not to use it. That's a Washington way of saying it would reinstate the Obama-era net neutrality regulations the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal in December 2017.

H.R. 1644 would also prevent the Commission from adopting rules similar to the current regulations, tying the hands of the Commission in the future and preventing the agency from evolving its rules to adapt to emerging technologies. So even getting the bill to the Senate floor for debate and vote is a long shot, many expect. California and some other states have adopted their own net neutrality rules but they are on hold pending the outcome of the challenge to Pai's order.

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