Senators Seek Delay on Net Neutrality Vote

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New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman took aim at the integrity of the FCC's rule-making proceeding to roll back many of its current net neutrality rules, pointing to evidence that numerous public comments filed come from stolen identities or are fake.

Schneiderman says the fake comments were all in favor of repealing the rule.

As stated in the letter, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has spent the past 6 months performing an investigation of his own regarding the comments in question, with his findings largely reflecting Kao's. "But my office's investigation found that this process was deeply corrupted - with one million comments that may have been submitted using real people's stolen identities", said Attorney General Schneiderman. His office recently posted a page where visitors can flag fake comments, and he said it's gotten around 3,000 responses from around the country so far.

Schneiderman joined a group of 27 senators who are also calling for a delay on the December 14 vote that is widely expected to repeal Obama-era net neutrality rules.

Schneiderman said his office is seeking FCC logs to show the origin of the comments.

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The Federal Communications Commission is on the verge of a historic vote to gut net neutrality rules and potentially ruin our internet.

The senators are concerned that the agency's public comment record on the issue may have been tampered with.

During a news conference in Manhattan, the Democratic attorney general said he received notification Monday morning that the FCC's inspector general's office would offer assistance in Schneiderman's probe into thousands of possibly phony comments that were left on the FCC's public comment section on the topic of net neutrality, the existing principle that internet service providers-such as Comcast or Verizon-can't slow down, speed up or block internet access for some web sites relative to others.

With the FCC set to vote on chairman Ajit Pai's plan to kill neutrality in just over a week, a diverse coalition-ranging from consumer protection organizations to progressive lawmakers to Harvard professors-is denouncing the FCC's proposals and scheduling nationwide protests to combat the agency's move to let massive telecom companies "cash in on the internet" at the expense of consumers.

She warned in a phone interview Thursday that the FCC's draft order "completely discards the fundamental open internet of the last 20 years", and that it is "going to a whole new place". That's unacceptable. The FCC needs to correct this course immediately. "This is an attempt by people who want to keep the Obama Administration's heavy-handed Internet regulations to delay the vote because they realize that their effort to defeat the plan to restore internet freedom has stalled".

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