Nebraska Senator Adam Morfeld introduced Legislative Bill 856 on Friday, which would restore net neutrality at the state level if passed by the Nebraska Legislature. Called the “Internet Neutrality Act”, it would restore the rules the FCC recently voted along party lines to repeal and would prohibit Nebraska-based broadband service providers from “limiting or restricting access to web sites, applications, or content.”
“For me, this is an economic development and consumer protection bill,” Morfeld told the Lincoln Journal Star. “The internet drives the economy now, and it’s critical people have open and fair access to the internet.” He added that he was “shocked at the support I received from Republicans, from Democrats and Libertarians.” Hmm, it’s almost as if the supposed overwhelming support for repealing net neutrality was fabricated twaddle.
Morfeld isn’t the only one seeking to restore the consumer protections. Similar state-level moves have been made in Washington, California, and New York, and even Netflix has been weighing in. These moves face a potential push-back from the federal government, however. On January 4th, the FCC published a declaratory ruling which stated, among other things, that federal rules regarding broadband internet service supersede all state or local regulations. In other words, federal appointees will support states’ rights on most matters but then seek to ignore states’ rights when it comes to obvious, why-are-we-even-arguing-this laws supporting net neutrality and medical marijuana. Smoke ’em if ya got ’em.