Net neutrality gets a reprieve, but it could be short-lived

US Senate net neutrality

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

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.

Wednesday's Senate vote on a resolution to reinstate net neutrality protections ended 52 in favor and 47 against.

But most Republicans opposed the effort, saying the regulations were potentially too onerous and that Democrats were trying to use the issue for partisan gains in November.

Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., said the internet thrived long before the Obama administration stepped in with rules in 2015, and he predicted that when the FCC repeal is in place, consumers won't notice a change in their service.

The bill will have a much harder time in the House of Representatives, where Democrats would need 25 Republicans to switch sides in order to bring it up for a vote.

"It's typical of how Republicans have used their total control of Washington: Increase costs on Americans who actually work for a living while giving more breaks to the rich, well-connected special interests they care about".

The US Senate yesterday voted to retain net neutrality, over-turning the FCC's repeal back in December. "Strong consumer protections from deceptive practices, including slowing promised internet speeds, can be implemented without the heavy-handedness of net neutrality".

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The Senate approved a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution that would undo the Federal Communications Commission's vote to deregulate the broadband industry. Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John Kennedy of Louisiana, will be sent to the GOP-led House, where it'll likely go nowhere - and President Donald Trump is unlikely to back it.

There has been a ton of public support for Net Neutrality over the a year ago, making it a hard issue for politicians to ignore. Tech giants such as Google and Facebook have been vocal in their support for the retention of the rules.

"This is our chance, our best chance to make sure the internet stays accessible and affordable to all Americans", said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from NY.

"As the inventor of the web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, said, the internet must remain a permissionless space for creativity, innovation and free expression", said McGrath. "Small business owners across New Hampshire have told me that the FCC's decision to repeal net neutrality threatens the level playing field that allows them to compete online".

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.

Fox Business and One American News Network, a decidedly pro-Trump outlet known for pushing conspiracy theories, aired full reports of the net neutrality vote.

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