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Clinton and Trump Agree on the Importance of Broadband Connectivity

We’re now less than a month away from the Presidential election.  For the past several months, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have been vying for the White House and exchanging blows on everything from their personal lives to foreign policy to healthcare.

However, amidst the political theater of the election, one thing that has caught the attention of the technology industry has been the talk — and lack of bickering — about each’s candidate’s plans to expand broadband opportunities to close the digital divide. Whether it’s Clinton’s plan to connect every home in America by 2020 or Trump’s more general promises, thankfully, for the sake of America, the candidates appear to be united in recognizing the importance of broadband connectivity.

Continued focus on connectivity is good for our country.  According to Pew Research Center, we know that the vast majority of Americans have access to and use the Internet. Presently, only 13 percent of U.S. adults do not use the Internet and one-third of Americans haven’t adopted broadband at home. That’s proportionally equivalent to the 2.4 million Washingtonians who do not have broadband access at home. As a result, these Americans are missing out on the value of being connected to people and global markets online.

We also know that bridging the digital divide will offer tangible and tremendous economic benefits. Some estimate that expanding broadband will create $32 billion in annual economic value.  Indeed, we’ve already seen the economic benefits of past and continuing efforts to bridge the broadband gap in America. According to recent studies, the national shift to wireless broadband network technology between April 2007 and June 2011 created nearly 1.6 million jobs.  With all of this in mind, it is evident that ensuring everyone has access to a broadband connection must be a high priority for voters, lawmakers and, especially, our next President.

As the election winds down and we prepare for a new administration, it is critical that we take steps to educate consumers and policymakers on the importance of broadband access and adoption. After all, our economy and future prosperity are dependent on robust broadband infrastructure.

Categories Blog | Tags: | Posted on October 25, 2016

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