Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Senate to vote on net neutrality tomorrow, urgency to save the internet today

"TIME IS RUNNING OUT TO SAVE #NetNeutrality!"

Image Credit: Fight for the Future

With less than 24 hours until the vote, the fate of net neutrality is in the hands of the Senate. The Congressional Review Act resolution to restore net neutrality rules, which were reversed by the FCC last year, will be brought to the Senate floor on Wednesday.

“The next 24 hours could make or break this fight…This is a moment where the entire Internet needs to go all-in for net neutrality,” Fight for the Future’s deputy director, Evan Greer, wrote in a statement.

In what’s being called “the most important vote for the internet in the history of the Senate,” advocates, such as the organization Fight for the Future, and supporters of net neutrality are “sounding the alarm” and asking constituents to get involved by contacting their senators regarding this issue.

“Will we stand with the American public, who understand why net neutrality is vital, or will we side with those who wish to control how we use the internet?” Sen. Bill Nelson, (D-Fla.), said. “The choice should be clear – the American public should always come first.”

A recent poll showed the majority of Americans across the political spectrum were in support of net neutrality.

The resolution, which was introduced by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), “has the support of the entire 49-member Senate Democratic caucus, plus a pledge from Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) to vote in favor,” Common Dreams reported. But the group needs one more vote to stop the Senate Republicans from giving corporate telecommunication companies power over the internet in which they would control traffic in order to charge different rates for different access and services.

Two senators who are said to be “likely candidates to rethink their opposition” of net neutrality include John Kennedy (R-La.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Common Dreams reported. Other key senators in Utah, Florida, Nevada, Arizona, and California could also help pass Sen. Markey’s resolution.

“The outcome of this Senate vote will impact the fight for Internet freedom for years to come,” Greer wrote in a statement. “If we turn this into a huge moment, we can shift the dynamic in Washington, D.C. and get lawmakers from both parties to listen to their constituents for once, at least on this one issue.”

Since “lawmakers only have 60 legislative days from when FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s repeal plan was published in the Federal Register to void the rollback, meaning they face a June 12 deadline,” tomorrow’s vote is crucial for the future the internet, Common Dreams reported.

“By passing my CRA resolution to put net neutrality back on the books, we can send a clear message to American families that we support them, not the special interest agenda of President Trump and his broadband baron allies,” Markey said in a statement. “From the GOP tax scam, to attacks on the Affordable Care Act, to rolling back fuel economy standards, and to net neutrality, the Trump administration has repeatedly ignored the needs of everyday American families.”

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