The Republican-led FCC repealed numerous net neutrality rules in 2017, setting off a battle in the courts, Congress and a number of state houses over what the rules of the road should be for internet providers.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters on Tuesday that the net neutrality bill Democrats are pushing through the House will be "dead on arrival" in the Senate.
The largely symbolic 232-190 vote on the "Save the Internet" bill aims to restore regulations approved in 2015 and then rolled back in 2017 in the latest back-and-forth over the contentious internet issue that has been debated for over a decade.
The bill's passage this year, after failure in the Senate last year, is another example of Democrats' show of strength since taking control of the legislature's upper chamber in the 2018 elections.
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Governor Jared Polis, a Democrat, is expected to sign the measure.
Phillip Berenbroick of the consumer group Public Knowledge said the House vote "reflects the overwhelming public consensus that strong net neutrality consumer protections are vital for the internet ecosystem and the digital economy". The White House "strongly opposes" the measure that would "return to the heavy-handed regulatory approach of the previous administration", it said in a statement.
To that end, opponents of the House bill have slammed it as a political stunt aimed at rallying Democratic voters ahead of the 2020 presidential elections. Brian Schatz of Hawaii, a top Democrat on the tech-focused Senate Commerce Committee, said in an interview last week. So they're not interested in establishing a statute. "[But] it may very well be a traditional thing where the Senate passes its bill and we go to conference to come up with a consensus. They may differ on how and what it should cover, but they still think we should do it". A decision by a federal appeals court on that is pending.
After the FCC's repeal vote, officials in Vermont, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Montana, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington and California moved forward with efforts to reinstate the former rules on a state-wide basis. Some agreed not to enforce the laws pending the outcome of the Mozilla case.