Victory: Net Neutrality Repeal Blocked In The Senate
May 16, Washington, DC – Today, the US Senate voted 52-47 against the FCC’s new rule which would repeal net neutrality. Three Republicans, Senators Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski and John Kennedy, joined with two Independents, Senators Angus King, and Bernie Sanders, along with all Democratic senators to create a majority in favor of the Resolution of Disapproval under the Congressional Review Act (CRA).
Four years ago today we began our occupation of at the FCC for net neutrality. Great to see the Senate victory on this anniversary for us. The House will be a challenge, but victory is within reach. The vast majority of people in the US, 86% support net neutrality, no one wants the people of the Internet against them in 2018. A big wave of phone calls, emails and protests are about to hit the House. They will have to choose between the people or the most hated companies in the United States, in an election year where many are already feeling insecure.
This tremendous victory in the Senate occurred after massive grassroots pressure on members of the US Senate, including weeks of sustained grassroots pressure in the form of 16 million emails, over a million phone calls to the Senate. People said it was impossible to achieve this victory in the Senate because the big Internet Service Providers were too powerful and had made massive donations to senators and they would not go against their donors. They were wrong. The people mobilized on the Internet and won.
The movement goes to the next step with huge momentum. In the US House of Representatives, 218 members, a majority of the House, are needed to support a discharge petition to get the bill to the House Floor for a vote. Incumbent members of the House are nervous, especially Republicans. Their leader, Paul Ryan, retired in the face of a wave of opposition and a likely change of the House from Republican to Democrat in the November elections.
The FCC is scheduled to end net neutrality on June 11 unless Congress stops them. To win in the House, we need 25 Republicans to join with all Democrats to oppose the repeal of net neutrality. This is not an easy task, but it is one we can achieve. Currently, the measure has the support of 161 House Democrats.
You can take action now, by contacting your representative. The House needs to hear phones ringing off the hook in order for us to convince them to side with the people and protect the Internet. Take action at the coalition site, Battle for the Net.
The net neutrality issue is one of national consensus. An April 18 poll showed overwhelming bi-partisan support for net neutrality. The poll found 86% oppose the repeal of net neutrality, including 82% of Republicans and 90% of Democrats. Any candidate running for office does not want to be on the wrong side of this issue in an election year. The poll also found that since December, opposition to the repeal of net neutrality has been going up, Republican opposition has increased from 75% to 82%, while Democrats have held steady. Momentum is on the side of those who seek to block the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality. Net neutrality is not a partisan issue. Poll after poll has shown that a majority of USians support net neutrality.
The key to winning is to build so much grassroots pressure that it is impossible for Members of the House to ignore the people. Contacting members of the House will show that they should listen to their constituents if they want to stay in office. Take action now at the coalition site, Battle for the Net.
The CRA is the quickest way for Congress to uphold the will of the people and preserve strong net neutrality protections. Unlike the Senate, where only one-third of the Senate was up for re-election, every member of the House is facing re-election this year.
The business community played an important role in winning this vote today. Just this week, dozens of businesses wrote Congress urging them to stop the FCC’s repeal of net neutrality. Everyone from internet engineers; the inventor of the web, Sir Tim Berners-Lee; businesses like Amazon and Netflix; more than 800 startups from all 50 states; a majority of small businesses; and a strong majority of USians support the rules. The the internet is thriving because of the 2015 net neutrality rules.
Take action today to save the Internet, and spread the word in your community. The Internet is ours and we must keep it as a common carrier that serves everyone without discrimination.