McConnell Applauds FCC Action to Keep the Internet Open to Consumers
‘Today, however, we finally have an FCC Chairman who recognizes that we live in a new era — an era of smartphones and laptops and other mobile devices — a Chairman who believes that innovation, ingenuity, growth, and job creation aren’t dirty words to be stifled with unnecessary red tape.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) made the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding expected action by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to begin the rollback of a harmful, Obama-era net neutrality regulation:
“I don’t have to tell colleagues how important the Internet and other wireless technologies have been in our modern society. From the way students learn, to the way we do business, and even the way we as Senators keep in touch with our constituents, these advancements have in many ways fundamentally changed how we operate.
“But it’s important to remember that these groundbreaking technological advances didn’t just come about because of government mandates or heavy-handed bureaucracy; they grew out of an environment that allowed for, and actually encouraged, innovation. From the Clinton years onward, there was a bipartisan consensus that we should maintain the kind of light regulatory touch that allowed this innovation to thrive in the first place, in order to open the door to further advancements.
“Unfortunately that changed under the Obama Administration, which used the FCC to force through antiquated regulations designed for an age of rotary phones and switchboards. Today, however, we finally have an FCC Chairman who recognizes that we live in a new era — an era of smartphones and laptops and other mobile devices — a Chairman who believes that innovation, ingenuity, growth, and job creation aren’t dirty words to be stifled with unnecessary red tape.
“And so, today, it is expected that Chairman Pai and Commissioner O’Rielly will take the first necessary step to address a deeply-flawed Obama-era diktat that empowered bureaucrats with vast new powers to control the Internet through archaic rotary-telephone regulations from nearly a century ago. No matter how well intended, this overreach threatened the very innovation that brought us the Internet and other technological advancements in the first place. I commend Chairman Pai for taking this preliminary step to address the issue, which will also open the door for bipartisan Congressional action to keep the Internet open for consumers — permanently. Later today, Senator Thune and others will come to the floor to talk more about this issue. I look forward to hearing what they have to say and thank them for continuing this important conversation.”
Related Issues: FCC, Regulations