SCOTUS Says Net Neutrality Won't Get Its Day in Court

A rubber stamp stamping the word

A rubber stamp stamping the word

The Justice Department appealed that decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, but it also asked the Supreme Court to weigh in even before the 9th Circuit ruled - a procedure known as "cert before judgment".

The rules championed by Democratic former President Barack Obama, meant to safeguard equal access to content on the internet, were opposed by President Donald Trump, a Republican.

The US Supreme Court has, in a 4-3 vote, declined to hear challenges to the FCC's 2015 network neutrality order that was adopted during the Obama administration under then-FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler.

The Administration began its effort to close out the program 14 months ago, but the plan met prompt challenges in federal trial courts across the nation, resulting in orders at least temporarily requiring the government to continue operating the program as is.

Cases challenging the administration's attempts to end protections for undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children are now pending before the Second, Ninth, and D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The FCC itself also was in favor of voiding the decision that upheld its 2015-era rules, according to Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democrat on the commission.

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The Supreme Court's rejection of this appeal ensures the D.C. Circuit's decision remains in the record as binding precedent for the FCC's authority to adopt strong net neutrality rules.

Lyle Denniston has been writing about the Supreme Court since 1958. "There was absolutely no reason for the Supreme Court to take this case, and today's denial puts to bed the chances of upending the correct appellate-court decisions". In imposing the rules, the FCC reclassified internet service as a common carrier, a regulatory maneuver that was met with staunch opposition from major internet providers like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon.

The administration's attempt to end the program previous year was rejected by multiple federal courts and the Department of Homeland Security was ordered to continue accepting renewal applications while the case is adjudicated. They know their repeal of net neutrality was so filled with procedural missteps and outright fraud that they're anxious it will be overturned by next year's net neutrality lawsuits, opening arguments for which begin in February.

The Supreme Court has ended the court fight over repealed Obama-era "net neutrality" rules that required internet providers to treat all online traffic equally.

Behind those two issues are a series of individual questions about the constitutionality of the shutdown and its legality under federal immigration and court procedure laws. It was opposed by internet companies like Facebook Inc, Amazon.com Inc and Alphabet Inc, which have said the repeal could lead to higher costs.

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