The Federal Communications Commission is scheduled to repeal net neutrality rules on April 23. On Thursday, the agency formally published the final notice of the repeal in the Federal Register, starting a 60-day countdown until net neutrality is eliminated.
But net neutrality supporters still have a chance to turn things around. Dozens of organizations are expected to challenge the repeal in court, and Democrats have been pushing for a special congressional vote to block the Restoring Internet Freedom Order from going into effect.
Democrats, along with two independents and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), so far have 50 votes in the Senate – one vote shy of overcoming the Republican majority. If Senate Democrats succeed, a measure would still have to pass in the House of Representatives. And even if it does, President Donald Trump would have the power to veto it.
Attorneys general from more than 20 states have filed lawsuits to block the repeal of net neutrality, and public interest groups have filed petitions in court. The publishing of the final notice on Thursday means these parties have a 10-day during which they must refile their lawsuits.
In December, the Republican-led FCC voted to repeal Obama-era net neutrality rules, which ensure that internet service providers treat all online traffic equally. The rules prohibit companies like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon from charging customers for access to “internet fast lanes,” and also from slowing down or blocking access to certain websites or services.
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