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Maryland House panel kills bill restricting sale of Internet customer data

A House committee chairman squelched a late-introduced bill Monday that would restrict Internet Service Providers from selling customers' browsing histories.

Del. Dereck Davis, chairman of the House Economic Matters Committee, called a quick hearing after the Senate passed the measure sponsored by Sen. James C. Rosapepe just hours earlier.

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After a hearing in which Rosapepe presented his bill, which was introduced just last week, Davis announced the panel would take no further action.

"To try to do this on the fly, it just doesn't work for me," Davis said.

The Prince George's County Democrat said he has to protect the committee's reputation.

"I can do things expeditiously, but this I cannot do," he said.

The bill had been introduced in response to President Donald J. Trump's signing of legislation overriding a Federal Communications Commission rule imposing such curbs on ISPs like Verizon and Comcast.

Rosapepe, also a Prince George's Democrat, had urged the committee to pass the bill without amendments so it could go through both houses before the midnight deadline. But after the senator had difficulty answering questions from both Republican and Democrats on the panel, Davis abruptly pulled the plug.

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