U.S. Chamber Statement on President Obama’s Call for Title II Broadband Regulation

Monday, November 10, 2014 - 5:15pm

WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President for Government Affairs R. Bruce Josten issued the following statement today on President Obama’s call for Title II broadband regulation:

“The U.S. Chamber of Commerce strongly opposes President Obama’s call for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to impose antiquated Title II regulations on broadband and reverse two decades of bi-partisan support for a lightly-regulated Internet. As an independent agency, the FCC answers to Congress—not the administration. The Chamber urges the FCC to exercise its independent judgment.

“As evidenced by the investment, innovation, and products available in the broadband marketplace, the United States has an “open Internet.” Jobs and new business opportunities are being created because broadband providers are investing tens of billions of dollars every year to upgrade their networks allowing for higher speeds and greater capacity. At the same time, innovative broadband-enabled applications, services, and devices are being developed.  

“Title II—which has its origins in 1880s railroad regulation and was originally enacted as part of the Communications Act of 1934 when rotary dial telephones were considered modern technology—should not be imposed on broadband networks. Reversing decisions that date back to the Clinton administration would plunge the industry into years of litigation and cause extreme regulatory and market uncertainty.

“By engaging in such a regulatory overreach, Title II would deter private-sector investment in broadband technology, harm innovation, and slow economic development and job creation. The Internet has thrived under the light touch policy approach that has been applied since its inception. The government should not risk undermining its growth now by applying heavy-handed regulation designed to govern rotary phones. This action could have a wide-ranging impact on the entire Internet ecosystem, not just on broadband service providers.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.