Biden pick to chair FCC affirms support for net neutrality

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WASHINGTON, Nov 17 (Businesshala) – President Joe Biden’s choice for chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Jessica Rosenworcel, told senators on Wednesday that she supported the historic net neutrality rules, but offered few details as to why she would expect a 2017 rollback. How can I proceed to reverse?

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Late last month, Biden nominated Rosenworcel for a new term on the five-member commission and nominated his chair. Biden also nominated Gigi Sohn, a former senior aide to Tom Wheeler, who served as an FCC chair under President Barack Obama, for an open seat.

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Biden waited more than nine months to file the nomination for the FCC, which hasn’t been able to address some key issues because it currently has a vacancy and is split 2-2 between Democrats and Republicans.

The FCC under Obama, Donald Trump’s predecessor, adopted net neutrality rules in 2015 by barring Internet service providers from blocking or throttling traffic, or offering paid fast lanes.

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“I continue to support that,” Rosenworcel told the Senate Commerce Committee at her confirmation hearing. “The impact of the rollback in 2017 is broader than just net neutrality because it took the FCC away from oversight of broadband. … We need some oversight as it has become an essential service for day-to-day life “

Rosenworcel declined to support Republican Senator John Thune’s suggestion that the FCC go to Congress before pursuing a reinstatement of the 2015 rules. “I believe that (FCC) naturally has authority,” he told her.

She said the FCC would have to open up a traditional rule-making process and hear public comment before voting to reinstate them.

Maria Cantwell, chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, told reporters she would hear on December 1 a committee vote on Sohn’s nomination and Rosenworcel’s nomination.

“Now more than ever, Americans really need net neutrality,” said Democratic Senator Ed Markey.

Without confirming a new term, Rosenworcel will be required to leave the FCC next month.

Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan and Peter Cooney

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