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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.

Despite the Supreme Court decision to not hear the case, Republicans remain hopeful that the FCC's vote last December to repeal net neutrality rules will be upheld, though that decision is being challenged before the DC Circuit.

The Trump administration and internet service providers had asked justices to wipe away a ruling that had temporarily preserved the Obama-era net neutrality regulations.

Like the case turned away by the Supreme Court past year, this one was an appeal of a lower court decision upholding a local sheriff's refusal to issue a permit. The justices did not add any new cases to their docket for the term - they did that on Friday afternoon - nor did they call for the views of the USA solicitor general in any cases.

Conservative Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas would have granted the industry's request.

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The NCTA – The Internet & Television Association said it is "not surprising" that the Supreme Court declined to hear a case that went back to the Wheeler-era FCC.

The new FCC position took effect in June. But there were not enough justices for a majority, after Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh recused themselves. The D.C. Circuit Court found that the FCC was well within its authority to adopt net neutrality rules that prevented Internet service companies from blocking, throttling, or otherwise degrading traffic.

The administration's attempt to end the program previous year was rejected by multiple federal courts and the Department of Homeland Security was ordered to continue accepting renewal applications while the case is adjudicated. Instead, lower courts are examining how the government chose to wind it down. The Pai-led FCC is defending its net neutrality repeal against a lawsuit filed by dozens of litigants, including 22 state attorneys general, consumer advocacy groups, and tech companies.

The net neutrality repeal was a win for providers like Comcast Corp, AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc.


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