Thune Statement on Senate Democrats’ Objection to Bipartisan Net Neutrality Legislation, Vote on Markey CRA Resolution

May 16, 2018

WASHINGTON –- U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, issued the following statement on the Senate’s 52-47 vote to approve the S.J.Res. 52, a resolution offered under the rules of the Congressional Review Act to reverse changes to internet rules approved by the Federal Communications Commission in December 2017.

“This vote was about politics, not protecting net neutrality. Unfortunately, it’s only going to delay Senate Democrats from coming to the table and negotiating bipartisan net neutrality legislation,” said Thune.

“Today, I made a motion to put this resolution aside and take up a draft of net neutrality protection legislation, first floated in 2015, as a starting point for amendment and discussion. I’m disappointed but not surprised that Democrats rejected my offer to write, consider, and amend legislation in a process open to ideas from both sides of the aisle. Despite this vote, I remain committed to finding a path to bipartisan protections for the internet and stand ready to work with my colleagues on the other side of the aisle when they are ready as well.”

On the Senate floor, Thune proposed that S.J.Res. 52 be set aside and the Senate instead take up for amendment and consideration a draft he first put forward in 2015 with House of Representatives colleagues Reps. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Greg Walden (R-Ore.). The objection to beginning work on bipartisan legislation came from Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), the sponsor of S.J.Res. 52.

Click here to watch Sen. Thune’s floor speech on the need for bipartisan net neutrality legislation. His motion, and the objection from Sen. Markey, occur at the end of the floor speech.