Fox reports on Republican efforts to FCC plans to snare the internet in the regulatory web of big government:
Under the Congressional Review Act, Congress can strike down a regulation by passing a joint resolution. If President Obama vetoes the resolution, Congress could overturn it by a two-thirds majority.
While blocking the FCC’s Internet rules appear to be a longshot, Republicans aren’t backing down.
“This vote is an unprecedented power-grab by the unelected members of the Federal Communications Commission, spearheaded by Chairman Genachowski,” Hutchison said in a statement, referring to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowksi. “The FCC is attempting to push excessive government regulation of the Internet through without congressional authority and these actions threaten the very future of the technology.”
…Rep. Fred Upton, who will oversee the powerful House Energy and Commerce in the next Congress, has pledged to summon all members of the FCC to Capitol Hill to explain their move while working to block the plan “by any legislative means necessary.”
While withholding judgment on just how much backbone we’re likely to see from Republicans, it’s good that there’s at least the rhetoric of serious opposition to this move. And while I think the Congressional Review Act is an under-utilized tool for reigning in bureaucratic power grabs, more can be done here. The ultimate goal should simply be to abolish the FCC.
The FCC is an outmoded bureaucracy designed to regulate a state of technology that is no longer exists. It’s simply not relevant to the modern world. Cable, satellite TV, and even internet radio have negated any need to regulate the “public airwaves.” What limited useful functionality they might still be able to serve, such as selling broadcast licenses, can be done by some other department, while the rest of the FCC’s docket (censorship and bureaucratic control) needs to go the way of the dodo.
It’s great that Republicans are opposing this ruling, but they might as well go big or go home. Abolish the FCC.