Tomorrow, April 7, the U.S. House of Representatives is set to pass a joint resolution of disapproval (H.J.Res. 37) to overturn the FCC’s recently passed Net Neutrality rules. Despite objection from Republicans and the American public, the FCC passed Net Neutrality rules last December 21st, after years of debate and enormous uncertainty in the marketplace. The rules would allow the government to effectively regulate how Internet service providers manage data traffic on their networks.
The Commission’s Net Neutrality rules came despite a court shooting down prior their prior efforts, no legal authority to pass them, and no proof of harm. The Internet should remain free from regulation – as it’s always been – and this attempt by the FCC to control it is far from the realm of the government’s authority.
To provide an adequate check against the FCC, Congress is utilizing the Congressional Review Act, which allows them to nullify agency rules. The House Joint Resolution of Disapproval, sponsored by Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), reverses the stifling restraints enacted last year by the FCC. The measure is sure to be passed by the House, and has a good chance of passing the Senate. However, President Obama has made it clear he will veto any effort to repeal the rules. Earlier this week, the White House Budget Office fired off a statement that illustrates President Obama’s resolve regulate the internet.
The FCC’s attempt to takeover the Internet is yet another executive agency power grab by this administration. The Internet remains an engine of growth and innovation, thriving best when the free market governs. There is no evidence of a crisis that requires government intervention and regulation. Now more than ever the Internet must be remain free from government control.