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Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Penn.) said on Tuesday that net neutrality will be a focus for him as the chairman of the House Communications and Technology subcommittee, calling it “one of the preeminent digital rights issues we face today.”
Doyle, who spearheaded the ultimately unsuccessful House version of Congress’s effort to overturn the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decision to rescind net neutrality rules, made the remarks at the State of the Net conference in Washington, D.C.
Last year, the Senate and the House tried to use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to overturn the FCC’s decision. The Senate passed its version of the CRA last summer with some bipartisan support. However, the House was unable to get the 218 votes—a simple majority—needed to pass its own version. The effort fell 36 votes shy.
However, despite the CRA effort being unsuccessful, Doyle, while reflecting on the effort, said on Tuesday that net neutrality will still be a factor in the House moving forward, including the subject of his first subcommittee hearing.
“So while we came up short in the last Congress, I plan to continue my efforts to restore net neutrality rules and bring light to this issue,” he said. “Americans around the country overwhelmingly support strong net neutrality rules on a bipartisan basis. People understand that their ISPs have far too much control over their connection to the internet and the services they care about.”
“I intend to make net neutrality the subject of our first subcommittee hearing.”
In the speech, Doyle also said Congress needs more “vigorous” oversight of the FCC.
Shortly after the 2018 midterm elections, experts predicted the Democratically controlled House would increase their oversight of the FCC and look into net neutrality. A majority of newly-elected House Democrats vocally supported the issue before being elected.
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).