Fight to Save Net Neutrality Moves to House of Representatives
May 16, 2018
Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (PA-14) joined House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) at a press conference this afternoon in announcing that, with the passage of legislation to overrule the Federal Communications Commission’s order eliminating Net Neutrality in the U.S. Senate earlier today, the next step must be passage of this legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“The Senate vote is a major step forward in the fight to preserve Net Neutrality – and a great victory for the millions of Americans who use the internet," Congressman Doyle said this afternoon. “But the fight isn’t over. We’ve got to get this bill through the House as well in order to overturn the FCC’s repeal of Net Neutrality.”
“With the Majority Leadership in the House opposed to this bill, the only way to bring it before the full House for a vote is through a discharge petition,” Congressman Doyle explained. “Under the rules of the House, a bill MUST be brought to the House Floor for a vote if a majority of Representatives sign a discharge petition demanding it.”
“I’m filing a discharge petition to force a vote on the legislation to save Net Neutrality, and we just need to get a majority of Representatives to sign it,” Doyle added. “I’m sure that every Member of the House will want to know where their constituents stand on this issue.”
On December 14, 2017, the Federal Communications Commission voted along party lines to reverse the Open Internet Order, which regulates Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in order to ensure net neutrality. Net Neutrality means that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) don’t discriminate against different types of Internet content; the Open Internet Order prohibited ISPs from blocking, throttling, or discriminating against any internet content – as well as from charging more to deliver content faster. Repealing these net neutrality rules could lead to higher prices for consumers and small businesses, slower internet traffic, and even blocked websites.
Under the Congressional Review Act, members of the House and Senate can offer a joint resolution of disapproval on any regulation recently issued by a federal agency. Earlier this year, Congressman Doyle introduced legislation (H.J.Res. 129) in the House to overrule the FCC’s action, and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) introduced a counterpart bill in the Senate (S.J.Res. 52). The Senate bill was approved today by a vote of 52 to 47.
Congressman Doyle has filed a discharge petition to bring the legislation to save Net Neutrality up for a vote in the House (H.Res. 873), and if a majority of the Members of the U.S. House of Representatives sign the Net Neutrality discharge petition, House rules (specifically Rule XV, clause 2) mandate that it be voted on by the full House.