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Friday, June 30, 2006

Net Neutrality a Campaign Issue

Net Neutrality has become a campaign issue in the Nevada Senate race:

I just wanted everyone to know that Jack Carter supports net neutrality enthusiastically. He would certainly have voted for the Snowe-Dorgan amendment to preserve Net Neutrality if he had been in Ensign's place on the Commerce Committee yesterday. Ensign, of course, voted against it, and even called Net Neutrality a "poison pill."
And in the Washington Senate race.

Maria Cantwell was very much with us on the vote and the underlying bill. Now she's making net neutrality a campaign issue against her opponent, Mike McGavick.

The Seattle Stranger's Josh Feit reported today that Mike McGavick has opposed "net neutrality" legislation that would ensure big telecom monopolies could not engage in online content discrimination. After many tortured attempts to get a straight answer from McGavick on the question of net neutrality, Feit reports McGavick opposes the Snowe-Dorgan net neutrality amendment that would prevent anti-competitive online content discrimination.

The Snowe-Dorgan net neutrality amendment failed today in the Senate Commerce Committee on a vote of 11-11. It would have ensured all Internet traffic is treated in the same manner, regardless of its source or destination. A majority was needed for the amendment to succeed.

Senator Maria Cantwell is a member of the Commerce Committee and stood by her promise to stick up for Washington state employers and consumers against telecom monopolies that are lobbying McGavick ally Ted Stevens and the failed Republican leadership to allow marketplace discrimination.

In addition to numerous consumer advocacy groups, two of Puget Sound's Fortune 500 companies - Amazon and Microsoft - have both been vocal advocates of net neutrality as a key legislative priority, arguing the legislation is critical to continued innovation and regional job growth.

"By opposing net neutrality, McGavick again stands with non-Washington business interests and the failed Republican leadership that wants to add his vote to rubberstamp their anti-Washington state agenda," said Kelly Steele, spokesman for Washington State Democrats. "While Maria Cantwell fights for Washington state, McGavick's showing his true colors."

Cantwell is not liked among progressives for a variety of reasons, but she was absolutely with us on this vote. Not only did she vote for net neutrality, she voted against the underlying bill.
Which senate race will be next? Here are the 2006 congressional candidates who supporting net neutrality:
Linda Stender (NJ-07)
Steve Herr (WI-01)
Bill Winter (CO-05)
Donna Edwards (MD-04)
Jerry McNerney (CA-11)
Joe Sestak (PA-07)
Coleen Rowley (MN-02)
Al Weed (VA-05)
Robert Rodriguez (CA-25)
Chris Owens (NY-11)
Rick Penberthy (FL-05)
David Harris (TX-06)
Paul Aronsohn (NJ-05)
Herb Paine (AZ-03)
Tim Barnwell (TX-26)
Tony Trupiano (MI-11)
Eric Massa (NY-29)
Glenn Melancon (TX-04)
Bob Johnson (NY-23)
And of course, Ned Lamont (CT-Sen).

UPDATE: From the comments, I followed up on the net neutrality stance of Monica Lindeen (candidate for Montana's at-large congressional district):
Monica Lindeen, Democratic candidate for United States Congress, said she believes that Net Neutrality legislation pending in the Senate needs to insure protections not included in the House measure. "The internet is a resource that was created by public dollars," Lindeen said. "Any neutrality legislation needs to insure that citizens can continue to access all the resources it provides, and small businesses and non-profits should not be priced out of using the net to get their message and products out." Lindeen says the House legislation does not provide adequate protections, and she is disturbed that Congressman Rehberg voted against an amendment that would have strengthened that protection. "This is just another example of Dennis Rehberg's commitment to big business and not to the people of Montana who deserve free access to all the resources the internet provides."
Indeed. You can support Lindeen here.

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