Senate bill to preserve net neutrality wins first GOP backer

Senate bill to preserve net neutrality wins first GOP backer
© Greg Nash

A Senate bill that would stop the Federal Communications Commission’s effort to repeal net neutrality has won its first Republican backer on Tuesday, with Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill's Morning Report — Russia furor grips Washington Overnight Health Care: Novartis pulls back on drug price hikes | House Dems launch Medicare for All caucus | Trump officials pushing ahead on Medicaid work requirements Senate panel to vote next week on banning 'gag clauses' in pharmacy contracts MORE (R-Maine) throwing her support behind the effort.

“Senator Collins does not support the FCC’s recent decision to repeal net neutrality rules, and she will support Senator Markey’s legislation that would overturn the FCC’s vote,” a spokeswoman, Annie Clark, said in a statement to The Hill.

“She believes that a careful, deliberative process involving experts and the public is warranted to ensure that consumers have strong protections that guarantee consumer choice, free markets and continued growth.”

The move was first reported by the Bangor Daily News.

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The bill, which is being pushed by Sen. Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyDemocrats slam Trump for considering Putin’s ’absurd’ request to question Americans Hillicon Valley: Mueller indicts Russians for DNC hack | US officially lifts ZTE ban | AT&T CEO downplays merger challenge | Microsoft asks for rules on facial recognition technology | Dems want probe into smart TVs Dems push FTC to investigate smart TVs over privacy concerns MORE (D-Mass.), would use a legislative tool called the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to overturn the FCC’s vote last month to scrap the popular Obama-era rules.

Democrats have promised to use the CRA’s procedural mechanisms to force a vote on Markey’s bill, putting the heat on Republicans during a midterm election cycle.

Assuming all Democrats are on board with the legislation, they will still need one more Republican in order for it to pass the Senate. And even if that happens, the bill would have another uphill battle in the House.