Senate Dems to force vote on net neutrality

Senate Dems to force vote on net neutrality
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Senate Democrats are planning to take a first step next week toward forcing a vote to restore the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) net neutrality regulations.  

Democrats have been gathering signatures under the Congressional Review Act to force a vote to overturn the decision by the FCC to repeal the net neutrality rules. Sen. Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyOvernight Defense: Mattis dismisses talk he may be leaving | Polish president floats 'Fort Trump' | Dem bill would ban low-yield nukes Dems introduce bill to ban low-yield nukes Some employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report MORE (D-Mass.) tweeted on Monday that Democrats will file the petition to force the vote on May 9. The vote could take place as soon as the week after.

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“We’re in the homestretch in the fight to save net neutrality,” Schumer said in a statement. “Soon, the American people will know which side their member of Congress is on: fighting for big corporations and ISPs or defending small business owners, entrepreneurs, middle-class families and every-day consumers.”
 
It appears that Democrats may have the votes to win on the Senate floor. They currently have 50 votes in favor of the measure, including GOP Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsKavanaugh accuser agrees to testify next week The Memo: Could Kavanaugh furor spark another ‘year of the woman’? Kavanaugh fight roils an already ugly political climate MORE (Maine). 

If Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainTrump hits McCain on ObamaCare vote GOP, White House start playing midterm blame game Arizona race becomes Senate GOP’s ‘firewall’ MORE (R-Ariz.) is absent from the Senate, that would be enough to win a Senate vote. McCain has been absent all year as he undergoes treatment for brain cancer.

The legislation is not expected to move in the House, however, and even if it did, it's unlikely President TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Trump sells U.N. reorganizing and Kavanaugh allegations dominate Ex-Trump staffer out at CNN amid “false and defamatory accusations” Democrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her MORE would sign it.

Democrats are racing to get the vote completed by a June 12th deadline. They have a 60-day window to force a CRA vote following the FCC's publication of its net neutrality repeal in the Federal Register on Feb. 22.

The Senate legislation is only one component in the protracted battle over net neutrality rules. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai scrapped the rules in December, erasing regulations put in place by the Obama administration.

Telecommunications companies like Comcast and AT&T had viciously fought against the rules, which aim to prevent them from prioritizing and blocking certain types of content. Such firms argued that the rules were too onerous and stifled broadband investment.

In addition to the CRA in Congress, state attorneys general and advocacy groups have filed lawsuits challenging Pai’s move to repeal the net neutrality rules.

- Updated at 4:34 p.m.