McCain Moves Against Net Neutrality Rules
On the same day the Federal Communications Commission voted to begin consideration of codifying and expanding the agency's network neutrality principles, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) introduced legislation that would prohibit the FCC from enacting rules that would
regulate the Internet.
"Keeping businesses free from oppressive regulations is the best stimulus for the current economy," McCain said in a statement introducing the Internet Freedom Act of 2009.
In a press release, McCain referred to the FCC's action as a "government takeover of the Internet" that will "stifle innovation, in turn slowing our economic turnaround and further depressing an already anemic job market."
In particular, McCain opposes network neutrality rules that would extend to mobile carriers.
"The wireless industry exploded over the past twenty years due to limited government regulation. Wireless carriers invested $100 billion in infrastructure and development over the past three years which has led to faster networks, more competitors in the marketplace and lower prices compared to any other country," the press release stated. "Meanwhile, wired telephones and networks have become a slow dying breed as they are mired in state and Federal regulations, universal service contribution requirements and limitations on use."
The FCC proposed rules Oct. 22 that would codify the agency's four existing network neutrality principles and add two more rules of the road for broadband providers: a prohibition against ISPs (Internet service providers) from discriminating against content or applications and a mandate that network management practices are transparent. The FCC is also considering imposing network neutrality rules on mobile broadband carriers.