• Politics

Five 2016 Republicans Oppose Net Neutrality

2 minute read

A rough consensus is emerging among the Republican presidential field against net neutrality.

Five major candidates for the 2016 nomination have come out against a recent decision by the Federal Communications Commission to regulate how cable companies handle Internet speeds.

The FCC decision would prevent cable companies from creating “fast lanes” on the Internet, holding to the current system in which all web traffic is treated the same. President Obama and likely Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton have backed the FCC’s moves on net neutrality.

The five Republican contenders, meantime, argued that the regulations are unnecessary at best and harmful to the free market at worst.

Here’s a look at what they said, in order from least to most opposed.

Gov. Scott Walker: “I think on that … the guiding principle should be freedom.” (The Hill)

Sen. Marco Rubio: “We are regulating where regulation is not needed. We are regulating based on speculation, regulating in search of a problem.” (The Hill)

Jeb Bush: “The idea of regulating access to the Internet with a 1934 law is one of the craziest ideas I’ve ever heard. … It’s not going to be good for consumers. It’s certainly not going to be good for innovation.” (TIME)

Sen. Ted Cruz: “‘Net neutrality’ is Obamacare for the Internet; the Internet should not operate at the speed of government.” (Twitter)

Sen. Rand Paul: “These attempts to regulate the Internet are a direct attack on the freedom of information and an innovative market. The government needs to stay out of the way.” (Newsmax)

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Write to Tessa Berenson at tessa.Rogers@time.com