FIRST ON FOX: House Republicans are introducing a joint resolution disapproving of the Biden administration’s new “digital discrimination” rules package, which they describe as a power grab by the federal government over the internet.

The Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution of disapproval, which is lead by Republican Reps. Andrew Clyde and Buddy Carter of Georgia and co-sponsored by 65 House Republicans, aims to nullify the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) new digital equity rules package that went into effect this month as part of President Biden’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

“Under the guise of ‘equity,’ the Biden Administration is attempting to radically expand the federal government’s control of all internet services and infrastructure,” Clyde said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “The FCC’s so-called ‘digital discrimination’ rule hands bureaucrats unmitigated regulatory authority that will undoubtedly impede innovation, burden consumers, and generate censorship concerns. Given the Biden Administration’s long history of weaponizing agencies against the American people, Congress should not let this unconstitutional power grab go unchecked.”

A resolution of disapproval under the CRA allows lawmakers to object to rules being put forward by the administration. The FCC rules package the Republicans are targeting, which was ratified by the commission on Nov. 15 and went into effect Jan. 15, implements a section of Biden’s 2021 infrastructure bill that aims to prevent digital discrimination of access to broadband services based on income level, race, ethnicity, color, religion, or national origin.

U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) seal

In this photo illustration, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) seal is seen on a smartphone screen with the US flag in the background. (Photo Illustration by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)


“These rules will protect civil rights, lower costs, and increase Internet access for Americans across the country,” Vice President Kamala Harris said in a Nov. 15 statement.

According to the FCC, the new rules allow it to “protect consumers by directly addressing companies’ policies and practices if they differentially impact consumers’ access to broadband internet access service or are intended to do so,” and to apply those protections “to ensure communities see equitable broadband deployment, network upgrades, and maintenance.”

However, critics of the package argue it could have the opposite effect by widening the so-called “digital divide,” which refers to unequal access to digital technology.

“Yet again, the Biden administration is attempting to push its ideology through heavy-handed government controls,” Carter, who is co-leading the resolution, told Fox News Digital. “This time, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) plans to enact widespread regulations on every aspect of our internet’s functionality. This FCC ‘Digital Discrimination’ rule will undoubtedly widen the digital divide by stifling future investment in broadband deployments. Not only is it unconstitutional, but it goes against the very core of free market capitalism. Congress must block the FCC’s totalitarian overreach.”

Jessica Rosenworcel

Jessica Rosenworcel, chairwoman of FCC, testifies during a House Energy and Commerce Committee Subcommittee hearing on March 31, 2022, in Washington, DC. (Kevin Dietsch)

Multiple outside groups have also endorsed the GOP resolution, including Heritage Action for America, Americans for Tax Reform, Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA), and Americans for Prosperity, among others.

“TPA is happy to support Rep. Carter’s CRA of the FCC’s order on digital discrimination. The order represents a massive extension of government power into broadband networks and is a solution in search of a problem,” TPA president David Williams said in a statement provided to Fox News Digital. “Notably, embracing a disparate impact standard, which ignores a vast number of economic factors that shape market decisions, will inevitably result in regulators telling companies to alter their policies based on the race of their customers. We encourage all members to support Rep. Carter’s CRA and hold the FCC accountable for this unnecessary proposal.”

Biden speaks after drone attack

President Joe Biden speaks at South Carolina’s First in the Nation dinner at the South Carolina State Fairgrounds in Columbia, S.C., Jan. 27, 2024. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

Brendan Carr, one of the FCC’s commissioners, previously blasted the digital discrimination rules as a “breathtaking” government power grab.

Carr said in November, prior to their ratification, that the rules give the “Administrative State effective control of all Internet services and infrastructure.”

“President Biden has called on the FCC to adopt new rules of breathtaking scope,” Carr said. “Those rules would give the federal government a roving mandate to micromanage nearly every aspect of how the Internet functions — from how ISPs allocate capital and where they build, to the services that consumers can purchase; from the profits that ISPs can realize and how they market and advertise services, to the discounts and promotions that consumers can receive.”

“Talk about central planning,” he added. “I oppose President Biden’s plan.”


White House spokesperson Robyn Patterson previously defended the president’s plan in a statement to Fox News Digital when asked about Carr’s comments in November.

“President Biden believes no parent should have to drive to a McDonald’s parking lot so their kid can do their homework online,” Patterson said. “That’s why he worked with Democrats and Republicans alike to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to ensure every American has access to affordable, reliable high-speed internet.”

The House Republicans’ CRA resolution, which is expected to be filed Tuesday, would have to pass the House and Democrat-controlled Senate before making it to Biden’s desk.

Fox News Digital reached out to the White House and FCC for comment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *