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Markey Bringing Net Neutrality Activist to SOTU

The President has yet to unveil his guests at the State of the Union speech Tuesday (Jan. 30), but Title II fan Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) will be bringing a net neutrality activist as his guest.

Markey, who supports rolling back the FCC's net neutrality dereg order via a Congressional Review Act resolution, said Monday he is bringing Mohamad Ali, president of Carbonite, a Massachusetts data-protection company, who is an immigrant from Guyana.

He calls Ali one of the strongest net neutrality advocates. "“As a strong supporter of net neutrality, Mohamad recognizes the critical importance of a free and open internet for his company and its workers, and no one knows better that immigration is the lifeblood of the technology industry," said Markey, who also put in a plug for the CRA, which has 50 votes, including one Republican.

“We are one vote away in the Senate from overturning the FCC’s partisan decision to end its net neutrality rules,” Markey said. “I urge my Republicans colleagues to join the majority of Americans who support net neutrality and to co-sponsor my CRA resolution to reinstate the Open Internet Order.”

But even if the Democrats were able to hold on to those 50 supporters, add a Republican, and pass the CRA, it would have to pass in the House, a much tougher ask, then be signed by a President who supported the reg rollback. So, the CRA effort is a long shot at best.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.