Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), John Kennedy (R-La.), and Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) are now on the fence, due to concerns over "retribution from Comcast's and Verizon's army of lobbyists", according to the net neutrality advocacy group Fight for the Future.
A group of 85 companies, including several major websites on the internet, called on Congress to pass a bill tomorrow that would be the first step in overturning the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) decision to rescind net neutrality rules. With Democrats one vote shy of the needed simple majority, a petition is circling on change.org urging eight senators, including Republican senator Jeff Flake of Arizona, an outspoken critic of President Trump who isn't seeking reelection in this year's midterms, to join his colleagues in voting against the FCC's decision. "For a small business like mine - and I think probably numerous small farms that Stonyfield is sourcing milk from - everything is internet-based now", said Roger Noonan, President of the New England Farmers Union.
The senator, who has offered a formal resolution to restore net neutrality rules under the Congressional Review Act - which allows lawmakers to reverse federal agencies' regulatory actions - said Democrats have successfully placed the measure on the chamber's legislative calendar, setting the stage for a Senate vote on Wednesday. Bernie Sanders, of Vermont, and Angus King, of ME, and U.S. Sen.
The resolution, which was introduced by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine. Unlike the two-thirds, or 60-vote, majority senators must typically obtain to pass a piece of legislation, senators need only a 51-vote majority to pass something under a CRA vote.
Though the Senate is likely to vote to restore net neutrality, that may be as far as it goes.
Senate Democrat Ed Markey of MA and colleagues are forcing a floor vote to "save" something called "net neutrality".
"The internet should be kept free and open like our highways, accessible and affordable to every American, regardless of ability to pay".
"A vote against this resolution will be a vote to protect large corporations and special interests, leaving the American public to pay the price", Schumer said.
Adopted in December of 2017, the FCC says the rollback of net neutrality rules is set to take effect next month. They reportedly sought to address legal ambiguity caused by previous open internet regulations, which were struck down by courts.
"At Stonyfield, and at businesses across New Hampshire, we rely on an internet that provides equal access and helps us reach our customers and the farms we source from", said Britt Lundgren, Stonyfield Director of Organic and Sustainable Agriculture. "You are either for a free and open internet or you are not", said Sen. "This is the way things were prior to 2015, and how they will be once again".