Cantwell, Markey Announce Net Neutrality Resolution Reaches 40-Vote Milestone in the Senate

Washington, D.C.  – U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) continued her push to protect the open internet and restore the 2015 net neutrality rules. Today, Senator Cantwell, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-MA), and Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) – among others – announced that 40 senators have signed on to co-sponsor a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution of disapproval that overturns the anti-consumer regulations passed in December by Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai and supported by Donald Trump to end net neutrality.

At a press conference, Democrats made clear they will “force a vote” on the resolution to restore the 2015 Open Internet Order.  Thirty members are needed to send the CRA to the floor for a vote and a simple majority is needed for its passage. The measure will be formally introduced after the FCC regulation has been published in the Federal Register.

“Over the last several years, the biggest job growth that we have seen in America has come from internet businesses. We are seeing an attack on that internet economy by FCC rolling back this open internet rule,” said Senator Cantwell. “We cannot allow the FCC to put a chokehold on the internet by allowing big corporations to artificially charge consumers more. The open internet rule was here for a reason. It was to protect a level playing field and to make sure no one artificially created opportunity and access by controlling the internet.”

“Last month, the FCC turned a deaf ear to millions of Americans standing up for a free and open internet and instead gutted net neutrality,” said Markey. “The anti-consumer regulations passed by the Trump administration takes away a fundamental right that ensures the internet is a diverse, dynamic and open to everyone. We can force a vote to restore net neutrality and level the playing field away from the big corporations. There will be a political price to pay for those on the wrong side of history. Momentum is on our side.”

Last month, the FCC voted to repeal the 2015 Open Internet Order, which the D.C. Circuit Court upheld in 2016. The Open Internet Order prohibited internet service providers from blocking, slowing down, or discriminating against content online. Repealing the net neutrality rules could lead to higher prices for consumers, slower internet traffic, and even blocked websites. A recent poll showed that 83 percent of Americans do not approve of the FCC action to repeal net neutrality rules.

Senators co-sponsoring the CRA resolution include Senators Cantwell, Markey, and Schumer, Ron Wyden (D-OR), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Gary Peters (D-MI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Jack Reed (D-RI), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Tom Udall (D-NM), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Bob Casey (D-PA), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Patty Murray (D-WA), Tina Smith (D-MN), Jon Tester (D-MT), and Angus King (I-ME).