WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Leonard Lance, who is a member of the Communications and Technology Subcommittee in the House of Representatives, urged his fellow lawmakers Friday to oppose allowing the federal government to regulate and tax the internet. 

“We cannot allow the government a foothold for internet control," he told his fellow lawmakers. "The prosperity and opportunity we have come to know from the internet will be compromised if internet access becomes another victim of an overweening  governmental agency,” he said. “The internet has dramatically changed the global economy and how every one of us lives daily life."

The bill would prohibit the Federal Communications Commission from regulating the rates for broadband internet service. There is presently no companion bill pending in the Senate.

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"It is the great equalizer," Lance said about the internet, "providing an open platform to boost innovation and job creation, expand expression and free speech as much as any invention in history. But some unelected officials in Washington are eager to regulate it and some in office across the country are eager to tax it. We must prevent both.”

Lance's remarks preceeded the house vote approving H.R. 2666, the No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act. The 241-173 vote was mostly along party lines; no Republicans opposed the bill and only five Democrats voted in favor of it.

The measure originated in Lance’s subcommittee.