FCC Head Visits Little Rock To Promote Rural Broadband Access, Net Neutrality

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai told reporters in Little Rock Friday (April 6) he supports an “open and free Internet” despite criticism from opponents that the Trump administration’s rollback of net neutrality will restrict consumers’ insatiable appetite for more broadband content.

Pai was in Arkansas at the invitation of U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Little Rock, to discuss the importance of rural broadband to economic development in Arkansas, and the Arkansas senator’s efforts to address national-security threats from foreign telecom firms. In a press conference with Cotton, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chair said nearly everyone backs net neutrality but said the road on how the U.S. gets there is where he and his opponents differ.

“All of us favor a free and open Internet, but the question is what regulatory framework is best calibrated to preserve that free and open Internet and to promote more infrastructure investment,” Pai said, noting that former President Bill Clinton and a Republican Congress came to an agreement on the Telecom Act of 1996 to establish free market rules for the Internet.   MORE

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