Supreme Court rejects net neutrality appeal

Supreme Court rejects net neutrality appeal

DACA, which was created after President Barack Obama signed an Executive Branch memorandum, gives some illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children the opportunity to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and become eligible for a work permit. That still remains federal policy. Numerous young people have become fully integrated into their communities. Three of the court's conservative judges - Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas - voted to hear the case.

The decision [PDF] removes one piece of a jigsaw of legal cases working their way through the law courts that challenge both the 2015 rules - introduced during the Obama Administration under FCC chair Tom Wheeler - and the more recent 2018 rules - introduced during the Trump Administration by FCC chair Ajit Pai. Monday's filings followed up with the actual appeals reaching the Court.

There was no initial timetable from the justices on when they would decide whether to grant the Trump administration's latest petition.

The reason Big Cable persisted in that challenge - even after the rules were struck down by Pai's FCC - is because it fears the decision will act as a legal precedent against the new rules when yet another lawsuit is heard.

Internet firms such as Facebook, Amazon, Google parent Alphabet and Firefox developer Mozilla are in favour of net neutrality, arguing it prevents services providers from levying unfair charges on their businesses.

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For proponents of net neutrality, Monday's Supreme Court decision represents a victory.

That is the lead case that the Administration appealed to the Justices on Monday. If the Supreme Court had accepted the petitions or vacated the lower court rulings, doing so would have strengthened the FCC's repeal. That effort didn't go very well, with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit upholding the FCC's Open Internet Order in June of 2016, and ISPs losing a subsequent en banc appeal.

The legality of the separate DACA program for undocumented immigrant youths had never been tested in court (although an expansion of that program fell with the court rulings against the program for undocumented parents). Then last September, he announced that DACA would end six months later unless Congress replaced Obama's executive action with legislation. Those are the orders that the Administration has now asked the Justices to overturn. The Supreme Court's arguments calendar usually fills up by mid-January, so, unless the ninth circuit issues an expedited ruling, it's unlikely the administration would have the opportunity to challenge the ruling before the High Court before next year.

A divided high court refused and instead simply rejected the appeals, leaving the 2016 ruling in place.

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