Pramila Jayapal slams net neutrality repeal; calls it a threat to democracy

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Credit: CSPAN

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Thursday voted 3-2 to roll back net neutrality rules and most of the Democratic lawmakers, including Indian Americans criticize the move citing it will only help internet service providers like Verizon and AT&T make greater profits.

Indian American Rep. Pramila Jayapal, a Democrat from Washington state, called the FCC’s decision irresponsible and said the move is a threat to the United States’ democracy.

“The FCC’s 3-2 decision to roll back protections to ensure net neutrality is irresponsible and a threat to our democracy. Open access to the internet is indispensable to innovation, free speech and consumer privacy across our country” Jayapal said in a statement. “By repealing the net neutrality rules, the FCC and Trump administration have put large internet corporations in the driver’s seat by allowing them to potentially restrict our access to information, organizing tools, and free speech. That is unacceptable.”

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Jayapal said the repeal of the Obama-era rules could result in censorship of contents and is a threat to free speech.

“Today’s decision would allow those ISPs to institute fast and slow lanes, throttle service and prioritize content for the highest bidders. It could lead to censorship of content and undermines free speech. It promotes discrimination and inequity, and will particularly burden low-income and rural communities and communities of color, who already suffer from unequal access,” the statement read.

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Jayapal assured her followers that the fight is not over as she is an original co-sponsor, with Rep. Mike Doyle, of the Congressional Review Act that will reverse the FCC’s vote. She also promised prioritized action to protect net neutrality.

“Restricting the internet hurts our democracy and undermines justice and opportunity,” Jayapal added.