WASHINGTON -- Sen. Al Franken on Wednesday said he will reach out to his vast network of net neutrality supporters to apply pressure on Republicans after they added a provision in this next year's budget that guts new net neutrality rules.
The Republican measure, inserted into the budget over the summer, would prevent the Federal Communications Commission from enforcing net neutrality rules until Internet service providers deplete all legal challenges with the commission.
Franken noted in a press call with Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey that four million people weighed in in favor of net neutrality to the FCC.
"I guess we've got to appeal to people again," Franken said. "These businesses, like Ford, like Bank Of America, they don't want this either. The only people who really benefit for this are ISPs (Internet service providers). I'm not sure my Republican colleagues totally understand the issue of net neutrality."
Franken has been a vocal supporter of net neutrality, which essentially promises that all Internet traffic and speeds are treated equally.
The FCC, in February, called for regulating the Internet like a utility, which prevents the large providers like Comcast and Verizon from setting various prices for Internet lines, depending on the users and hosts