A coalition that drew together the Gun Owners of America, the Democratic-leaning organization MoveOn, and several of the country's top technology CEOs, blasted the committee with a news statement announcing, "House Ignores Public, Sells Out the Internet."
"Today the House Energy and Commerce Committee struck a blow to Internet freedom," the statement read.
The committee passed the Communications Opportunity, Promotion and Efficiency (COPE) Act of 2006 Wednesday, readying it for a full House vote. A portion of the bill would authorize the Federal Communications Commission to enforce network neutrality.
Massachusetts Democrat, Rep. Ed Markey, proposed an amendment that would have made it a federal law to ensure all Internet users have equal speed and access to all legal Web sites. In one week, 250,000 people joined the broad coalition supporting the protections in the "Markey Amendment."