May 25, 2006

HR5417 Voted Out of House Judiciary Commitee [6:29 pm]

House Judiciary passes Internet access measure [pdf]

The measure, approved by a vote of 20-13, would amend U.S. antitrust law. It would also counter a rival bill from another House committee that wants to encourage network providers to preserve consumers’ ability to freely surf the Internet instead of adopting stricter rules.

“The lack of competition in the broadband marketplace presents a clear incentive for providers to leverage dominant market power over the broadband bottleneck to pre-select, favor or prioritize Internet content over their networks,” said Judiciary Chairman James Sensenbrenner of Wisconsin.

[...] “We are optimistic that the majority in Congress will see this legislation as an attempt to solve a problem that does not exist,” said Tim McKone, AT&T executive vice president for federal relations.The Judiciary panel has been tangling with the House Energy and Commerce Committee over jurisdiction on the Internet issue, dubbed “Net neutrality.” Many lawmakers were on the fence but voted for the Judiciary bill to preserve their control over antitrust laws.

HR5417 status from Thomas; webcast from the Judiciary Committee WWW site

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