McConnell: Net neutrality bill 'dead on arrival' in Senate

Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Hill's Morning Report - Dem candidates sell policy as smart politics Overnight Defense: Trump ends sanctions waivers for buying Iranian oil | At least four Americans killed in Sri Lanka attacks | Sanders pushes for Yemen veto override vote McConnell: 'Time to move on' from Trump impeachment talk MORE (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that the Senate won't take up a net neutrality bill currently before lawmakers in the House.

“Dead on arrival in the Senate,” McConnell told reporters about the fate of the House bill, which is expected to get a vote in that chamber this week.

The bill would reinstate regulations put in place by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) requiring internet service providers to treat all web traffic equally.

The Obama-era rules prohibited internet service providers from blocking or throttling web content or from creating so-called internet fast lanes.

ADVERTISEMENT

The bill is expected to easily pass the Democrat-controlled House despite a veto threat from the White House. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) said the Trump administration “strongly opposes” the bill, dubbed the Save the Internet Act.

Republicans tried, without success, to amend the Democrats' bill in committee, including undercutting the FCC's authority to enforce the rules. They also called for Democrats to come up with a compromise bill that would establish less oversight of the broadband industry.

A majority of the Senate voted last year to reinstate the Obama-era FCC’s net neutrality rules.

Democrats were able to force the 2018 vote under the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress, with a majority vote in each chamber and the president's signature, to overturn recent agency moves.

Three Republicans — Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsMcConnell pledges to be 'Grim Reaper' for progressive policies Senate Republicans tested on Trump support after Mueller Collins: Mueller report includes 'an unflattering portrayal' of Trump MORE (Maine), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiOn The Money: Cain withdraws from Fed consideration | Says he didn't want 'pay cut' | Trump sues to block subpoena for financial records | Dems plot next move in Trump tax-return battle Cain withdraws from Fed consideration Cain says he 'won't run away from criticism' in push for Fed seat MORE (Alaska) and John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (La.) — joined the then-49 Senate Democrats to pass the bill, 52-47. The effort later died in the House last year, which was at that time controlled by Republicans.

The new legislation has long odds of passing the GOP-controlled Senate. Democrats now hold 47 seats in the chamber, after Republicans netted two additional seats during the November midterm election. And the 60-day window for forcing a vote on the bill under the Congressional Review Act lapsed last year.