By John Eggerton, Broadcasting & Cable Online, 12-12-17
Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, took to the Senate floor Tuesday to promote the FCC’s upcoming vote to roll back net neutrality regs and to call again for Congress to settle the debate once and for all.
He outlined the history of net regulation as he saw it, saying that the Obama Administration had tried, and then succeeded, in bringing the ‘net under unnecessarily tougher regs with the 2015 Title II-based Open Internet Order, with the FCC essentially doing the bidding of the President, he suggested.
Thune said those heavier regs had decreased infrastructure investment.
But he also said Congress and the FCC need to put a regulatory framework in place that protects consumers but does not discourage that investment. Doomsday rhetoric and fear mongering will not change the fact that the ‘net will continue to be an engine for economic growth,” he said. But Congress needs to step in.
He praised FCC chairman Ajit Pai for the proposal, and the transparency of publishing the draft before the Dec. 14 vote. He called it the most well informed and exhaustive comment record ever assembled on an item, which runs counter to critics of the Pai proposal, who point to fake comments and an alleged DDoS attack to suggest that docket was a mess, and that the vote should be delayed while it is sorted out. » Read More