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Senate Dems ask FCC to delay net neutrality repeal

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A group of Senate Democrats is asking the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to delay its effort to repeal the Obama-era net neutrality regulations in order to review a trove of recently-released documents related to the proceeding.

The nine senators, led by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), wrote to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai asking if the new documents had been taken into account by the agency when deciding to roll back the rules.

“Although the Commission has undertaken an historic proceeding to undo the Open Internet Order, the FCC has failed to provide stakeholders with an opportunity to comment on the tens of thousands of filed complaints that directly shed light on proposed changes to existing net neutrality protections,” the letter reads.

{mosads}Pai’s office declined to comment.

Last week, the FCC handed over 70,000 pages of documents in response to a Freedom of Information Act request from the National Hispanic Media Coalition. The group had requested all complaints filed by consumers about violations of the net neutrality rules since they went into effect in 2015.

The net neutrality rules require internet service providers to treat all legal web traffic equally. Pai and other Republicans believe the Obama-era FCC overstepped its authority with the regulations by reclassifying the ISPs as common carriers.

The coalition and the group of Senate Democrats now want more time for the public to be able to review and comment on the complaints. The official deadline for public input on the proceeding expired last month.

The letter was also signed by Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.).

“The public deserves an opportunity to review and analyze evidence that has a direct impact on the proceeding,” the letter reads.

Tags Al Franken Brian Schatz Chris Van Hollen Chuck Schumer Ed Markey Elizabeth Warren Ron Wyden

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