After the US FCC's Republican majority voted successfully to repeal net neutrality protections last week, Marsha Blackburn gleefully applauded the outcome, cheering what she called the beginnings of a "light-touch regulatory regime." As chair of the US House Energy Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, which is charged with the oversight and funding of the Federal Communications Commission itself, Blackburn, perhaps more than any other member of Congress, deserves credit for enabling last week's vote to proceed.
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Last week, the Republican-dominated Federal Communications Commission and its Verizon-loving chair Ajit Pai rammed through a wildly unpopular decision to repeal Barack Obama-era open internet guidelines in the US, potentially opening the door for internet service providers to start blocking or throttling anyone on the web they want or hitting them up for extortionate fees. With the FCC abrogating most of its own enforcement powers, the only way to stop the decision is Congress - but the Republican solution, Rep. Marsha Blackburn's "Open Internet Preservation Act," is just as bad as you'd expect.