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    This page contains excerpts from government reports, signed by elected officials.

17LTR-FCC on Feb 10, 2017

Report: supporting Lifeline program for low-income broadband
Source: Letter on low-income broadband
Excerpts from Letter to FCC chairman from 15 Senators: We write to express how deeply troubled we are that one of your first actions as FCC Chairman has been to undermine the Lifeline program and make it more difficult for low-income people to access affordable broadband. Lifeline is a critical tool for closing the digital divide--a problem you pledged to prioritize. Abruptly revoking the recognition of nine companies as Lifeline broadband providers does nothing but create a chilling effect on potential provider participation, and unfairly punish low-income consumers.

Last year, the FCC modernized the Lifeline program, rightfully refocusing its support on broadband, which helps end the cruel "homework gap" for the five million out of the 28 million households in this country with school-aged children who lack access to broadband.

By statute, the FCC has an obligation to ensure "consumers in all regions of the country, including low-income consumers" have access to "advanced telecommunications services."

Opposing argument: (Heritage Budget Book, "Cut Universal Service Subsidies"): Heritage Recommendation: Eliminate telecommunications subsidies for rural areas, phase out the schools and libraries subsidy program, and reduce spending on the Lifeline program by reducing fraud and waste. The "Lifeline" fund, while well-intended, has been plagued by fraud and abuse, as costs tripled from under $600 million in 2001 to almost $1.8 billion in the 2013 funding year.

Supporting argument: (ACLU, "Task Force Letter"): The ACLU, a co-chair of the Leadership Conference Media Task Force, joined this letter to the FCC Chairman in response to his decisions to revoke the Lifeline Broadband Provider designations for nine providers. The ACLU has long supported expansion of the Lifeline program, which provides access to phone and broadband services for lower income families. Also see related legislation SOPA and PIPA


    Participating counts on VoteMatch question 31. Scores: -2=Strongly oppose; -1=Oppose; 0=neutral; 1=Support; 2=Strongly support.
  • Topic: Technology
  • Headline: Support Lifeline program for low-income broadband (Score: 1)

  • Key for participation codes:
  • Sponsorships: p=sponsored; o=co-sponsored; s=signed
  • Memberships: c=chair; m=member; e=endorsed; f=profiled; s=scored
  • Resolutions: i=introduced; w=wrote; a=adopted
  • Cases: w=wrote; j=joined; d=dissented; c=concurred
  • Surveys: '+' supports; '-' opposes.



Democrats participating in 17LTR-FCC

Tammy Baldwin s1sWI Democratic Challenger 
Richard Blumenthal s1sCT Democratic Sr Senator 
Cory Booker s1sNJ Democratic Challenger 
Sherrod Brown s1sOH Democratic Sr Senator 
Al Franken s1sMN Democrat/DFL Jr Senator 
Kirsten Gillibrand s1sNew York Democrat 
Ed Markey s1sMA Democratic Challenger 
Patty Murray s1sWA Democratic Sr Senator 
Gary Peters s1sMI Democratic Challenger 
Bernie Sanders s1sPOTUS Democratic Presidential candidate 
Elizabeth Warren s1sMA Democratic Challenger 
Ron Wyden s1sOR Democratic Sr Senator 



Republicans participating in 17LTR-FCC



Independents participating in 17LTR-FCC



Total recorded by OnTheIssues:

Democrats: 12
Republicans: 0
Independents: 0


















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