President Trump’s eldest son on Thursday called Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai (R) “Obama’s FCC chairman” while attacking critics of net neutrality’s repeal.
Former President Barack Obama appointed Pai to the FCC as a commissioner in 2011, but it was Trump who made him the agency’s chairman last January.
“I would pay good money to see all those people complaining about Obama’s FCC chairman voting to repeal #NetNeutrality actually explain it in detail,” Donald Trump Jr. tweeted Thursday.
“I’d also bet most peopled hadn’t heard of it before this week,” he added alongside the hashtag #outrage.
The FCC earlier Thursday voted to repeal its landmark net neutrality protections, which were implemented under Obama’s administration via the 2015 Open Internet Order.
The agency voted 3-2 along party lines, with Pai and two Republican commissioners favoring the move and the FCC’s two Democratic commissioners opposing it.
“Following today’s vote, Americans will still be able to access the websites they want to visit,” Pai said during an open meeting prior to the FCC’s vote.
“They will still be able to enjoy the services they want to enjoy,” he added. “There will still be cops on the beat guarding a free and open internet.”
“It is not the job of the government to be picking winners and losers in the internet economy. What we need is a level playing field.”
The FCC’s decision followed months of heated public debate over the net neutrality rules, which dictated that internet service providers treat all websites equally.
Critics argued that removing the rules would let internet service providers block, throttle or favor certain online content and create internet “fast lanes.”
Supporters of erasing the regulations countered that they were heavy-handed government overreach that stifled investment and innovation online.
Thursday’s vote is unlikely to halt debate over the popular consumer protections, however, as public interest groups have already pledged to combat the decision in court.
New York and Washington’s attorneys general on Thursday each vowed to sue to preserve the net neutrality rules.