DC Trawler

Rasmussen: Americans overwhelmingly oppose letting FCC touch their Internets

Mike Riggs Contributor
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This would be sort of reassuring* if it had come out BEFORE the FCC’s vote on net neutrality:

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that only 21% of Likely U.S. Voters want the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to regulate the Internet as it does radio and television. Fifty-four percent (54%) are opposed to such regulation, and 25% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

The survey was conducted shortly after the FCC decided on a party line vote to impose so-called “net neutrality” regulations on the Internet world. Republicans and unaffiliated voters overwhelmingly oppose FCC regulation of the Internet, while Democrats are more evenly divided. Those who use the Internet most are most opposed to FCC regulations.

By a 52% to 27% margin, voters believe that more free market competition is better than more regulation for protecting Internet users. Republicans and unaffiliated voters overwhelmingly share this view, but a plurality of Democrats (46%) think more regulation is the better approach.

Fifty-six percent (56%) of voters believe that the FCC would use its regulatory authority to promote a political agenda. Half that number (28%) disagree and believe the commission would regulate in an unbiased manner. The partisan divide is the same on this question as the others. A plurality of Democrats sees an unbiased regulatory approach, while most Republicans and unaffiliated voters fear a political agenda.

Deep breaths.

Oh, and there’s this:

As you would expect, there is a huge gap between the Political Class and Mainstream Voters on this topic. Most Mainstream voters see free market competition as the best way to protect Internet users, but most in the Political Class prefer more regulation. Seventy-eight percent (78%) in the Political Class  believe the regulations would be handled in an unbiased manner, while 72% of Mainstream voters believe they would be used to promote a political agenda.

In other words: The real victors here are groups like Public Knowledge, Free Press, New America Foundation, and the rich people who bankrolled their grassroots campaigns.

As an aside: Why the hell did pollsters sit this issue out? They had two months (almost) between midterms and the FCC vote!

*If for no other reason than to debunk claims by the aforementioned groups that the only people concerned about having the FCC–an agency whose members regularly tramples the Bill of Rights, have kept the spectrum locked up for stupid reasons, and would like implement decency standards on the web–are corporations.