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White House warns Congress that anti-net neutrality bill could be vetoed

If Congress sends HR 2666 —a bill that might seriously weaken the FCC's net neutrality rules —to the president for his signature, it would almost certainly be returned with a veto stamp, the White House said this week.

The White House believes HR 2666 "would undermine key provisions in the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Open Internet order and harm the Commission's ability to protect consumers while facilitating innovation and economic growth," according to a statement of administrative policy released this week.

If presented with the bill, President Obama's staff "would recommend that he veto."

HR 2666 —called the "No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act" —would legally preclude the FCC from exercising regulatory authority over the rates charged by internet service providers. Opponents of the bill believe that telecom companies would use this as a shield, arguing that the commission's net neutrality rules are effectively rate regulation.

"The FCC's rules —issued after a lengthy rulemaking process that garnered an unprecedented amount of public input, including comments from four million Americans —recognize that broadband service is of the same importance, and must carry the same obligations as so many of the other vital services do," the administration said.

"These carefully-designed rules have already been implemented in large part with little or no adverse impact on the telecommunications companies making important investments in our economy."