Following a similar move by the House
, the Senate has launched its own investigation on the US Federal Communications Commission's upcoming call for Title II legislation of ISPs. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Chairman Ron Johnson (R-WI) is giving the FCC two weeks to provide documents related to, and reasoning for, the call for "what new factors" after President Obama's remarks induced the FCC to apply Title II reclassification.
The newly-installed Republican-majority Congress is moving rapidly to try and undermine or prevent
the FCC from potentially putting the large US carriers of Internet service under "Title II" regulation. FCC Chair Tom Wheeler revealed in a recent interview
that his latest proposal will definitely make net neutrality mandatory; it will nullify the "paid prioritization" deals Netflix was forced to make with carriers; can mandate rural expansion of high-speed Internet service, service to poorer communities and schools, albeit with hefty tax breaks; and address widespread complaints of poor customer service, lack of competition, and high prices prevalent with US ISPs.
Johnson wrote that "since the FCC is an independent agency that derives its authority from Congress and not the White House, it is highly concerning that the White House would seek to take on this level of involvement in the regulatory process of the FCC, or attempt to supplant completely the agency's decision-making apparatus."
Chairman Wheeler's original suggestion for Title II oversight far predates President Obama's public call for the regulation. Republican opposition to the concept also precedes the President's remarks, with a bill being debated right now in the House to block the FCC from implementing the oversight.