There is fresh evidence this morning that the fight for an open internet isn’t over; aroused citizens can still save it.
Open internet, or net neutrality, supporters announced on Monday that they need only one more vote to secure a Senate majority in support of blocking the Federal Communications Commission’s plan to repeal open internet rules the FCC adopted in 2015.
Fifty senators – 49 Democrats and Republican Susan Collins of Maine – have agreed to vote for a resolution of disapproval of the FCC’s action. Fifty-one votes would pass the resolution and set up a potentially decisive vote in the House of Representatives.
More than 5 million Americans petitioned the FCC in support of net neutrality before the commission embraced it in 2015. Open internet supporters also sent 5 million emails to members of Congress during a “day of action” last July.
Despite those outpourings of support, and polls that indicate net neutrality rules are backed by about 80 percent of Americans, a new FCC majority under Chairman Ajit Pai has adopted regulations that would permit Verizon, Comcast and other internet service providers to create “fast” and “slow” lanes for the flow of information online.
The internet is our national electronic town hall. With net neutrality protections wiped away, the internet providers could slow down the transmission of information from individuals, groups and companies that espouse views they don’t like or are unwilling or unable to pay tolls for faster transmissions. Net neutrality guarantees that everyone has an equal chance to be heard online.
A Senate vote to disapprove the FCC action will ratchet up pressure on members of the House to take similar action and keep the internet open. Please act today.
Office: Common Cause National
Issues: Media and Democracy
Tags: Net Neutrality