Congress

Rep. Walden Advocates for Internet Bill

House E&C chair says legislation key to protecting net neutrality 7/12/2017 9:29 AM Eastern
Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.): "Too much is at stake to have this issue ping-pong between different FCC commissions and various courts over the next decade."

House Energy & Commerce Committee chair Greg Walden (R-Ore.) celebrated the Internet Day of Action Wednesday (July 12) by calling for bipartisan net-neutrality legislation.

ISPs have also focused on a bill to clarify that the FCC can enforce net-neutrality rules of the road without imposing Title II.

Related > NCTA: Title II, Net Neutrality Not Remotely the Same

“Today’s Day of Action highlights the need for Congress to work together to protect consumers and ensure a free and open internet," Walden said.

"The internet and the new technologies it unleashed have revolutionized the world in just a few short decades, and done so with little or no federal regulation," Walden said, also echoing ISPs' take on the regulatory history. "I again call on my Democratic colleagues, edge providers and ISPs, and all those who make up the diverse internet ecosystem that has flourished under light-touch regulation to come to the table and work with us on bipartisan legislation that preserves an open internet while not discouraging the investments necessary to fully connect all Americans. Too much is at stake to have this issue ping-pong between different FCC commissions and various courts over the next decade."

Related > Dems Add Their Voices to Internet Advocacy Day

Hill watchers are not hopeful that Congress can find common ground given the deep divisions between parties on a host of issues. With some Democrats feeling steamrolled on healthcare, and in the wake of the Republican Congressional Review Act nullification of the Title II-related FCC broadband privacy framework, a bipartisan FCC broadband regulatory authority clarification bill that does not include Title II -- as it cannot from the Republican side -- will be a tough ask.

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