Ars Technica reports
that the Washington state legislature voted for a net neutrality law that the governor will sign, in defiance of the Federal Communications Commission. The new law applies to all wired and wireless Internet providers in the state and prohibits blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization, even though the FCC's December repeal prohibited states from passing their own net neutrality laws. Governor Jay Inslee previously pledged to enforce net neutrality "under our own authority and under our own laws," calling it "a free speech issue as well as a business development issue." The Washington state House passed the bill 93-5 on Feb. 9, and the Senate passed the bill Feb. 27 35-14. Five states -- Vermont, Hawaii, Montana, New Jersey, and New York -- have imposed the old net neutrality rules on ISPs doing business with state agencies, but this is the first state to pass a law that applies to all its citizens. Washington state will most likely see lawsuits filed by broadband providers, who will make the case that only the federal government can pass such laws.