GOP Ready to Rumble over Net-Neutrality Ruling

Dec. 22, 2010
Promise repeal of FCC ruling, declaring commissions push to ensure equal access to Web sites is a government over-reach.

Having long been a combustible issue, the Federal Communications Commissions ruling on network neutrality only added fuel to the fire, as incoming Republican lawmakers have promised a flurry of political and judicial challenges in the coming months.

The FCCs decision, which was announced on Dec. 22, broadly created two classes of Internet access, one for fixed-line providers and the other for the wireless Net. Several incoming GOP committee chairs in the newly-controlled House of Representatives have called the FCCs actions a government intrusion into private life.

The FCC attempted to prevent fixed-line broadband providers like Comcast and Qwest from blocking access to sites and applications. But the rules would also allow wireless companies more latitude in putting limits on access to services and applications.

Incoming House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) told Politico the new House majority will work to reverse this unnecessary and harmful federal government power grab next year.

According to Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), who will head up the House subcommittee on communications and technology in the new Congress, the FCC overstepped its bounds and the decision will be repealed.

We plan to look at all legislative options for reversing the decision, he said. We also plan to hold a series of hearings early next year on the substance, process and claims of authority underlying this proceeding.

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