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FCC Watchdog Investigating Net Neutrality Rulemaking Process

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Mar 17, 2015, 1:11 PM   by Eric M. Zeman
updated Mar 17, 2015, 1:39 PM

The FCC's internal inspector general has opened an investigation into the agency's net neutrality rules. Specifically, the watchdog is combing through the FCC's rulemaking process to see if it improperly collaborated with the White House when drafting the rules. The FCC had set itself on a path towards creating the rules last summer, but President Barack Obama issued a public statement in November requesting the FCC to apply the strongest rules possible under Title II. Several weeks later, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler conceded that strong rules under the common carrier definition were the way to go. The FCC's proposed rules would ban network providers from blocking web sites or apps, prevent them from throttling speeds, and prevent them from creating paid prioritization schemes. The inspector general did not commented on the matter, which was brought to light by Republicans. The FCC voted in favor of the rules 3-2 along party lines last month, but the rules face a long slog through the legal system before becoming law. Wheeler later said the President's remarks influenced his thinking on the matter, but only when the financial markets didn't react negatively to the suggestion.

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Mar 19, 2015, 11:46 AM

I wonder

If this investigation doesn't turn up any improper influence from the White House, and if the new rules manage to persevere through " a long slog through the legal system before becoming law," will the detractors still be piping on about government overreach and how the rules have no legal basis?
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