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Media & Democracy 01.21.2021

Common Cause Welcomes Jessica Rosenworcel as Acting Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission

“President Biden has appointed Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel as Interim Chair of the Federal Communications Commission.  She is ideal for the job.  I know, because we worked together when she led my staff while I was a commissioner there.  She knows the FCC from the bottom up and she understands how to make good things happen there.  She was called from my staff to the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee, where she was responsible for telecom and media policy.  Then she was appointed a commissioner at the FCC and has demonstrated a mastery of the issues that has been seldom matched.  Whether it’s bringing broadband to every home in America, encouraging internet availability for our schools, making wise decisions for the utilization of spectrum, contesting telecom and media monopolies, battling mis- and dis- information, she has a combination of vision and practicality that make her perfect for the chairmanship.  She is a true advocate of the public interest.  Congratulations, Jessica.”

Media & Democracy 12.21.2020

COVID-19 Stimulus Package Provides Significant Broadband Relief to Help Connect Low-Income Households, Ignores other Democracy Reform Priorities 

Today, Congress released the text to an emergency $900 billion COVID-19 stimulus package that includes $7 billion to increase broadband access throughout the nation. While, foregoing other needed democracy reforms present in earlier versions of pandemic relief legislation, the package specifically includes an Emergency Broadband Benefit, which provides $3.2 billion for a $50 monthly subsidy for eligible low-income households and a $75 monthly subsidy for households on Tribal lands to purchase a broadband connection. Households eligible for the Benefit include those who qualify for the Federal Communications Lifeline program, free and reduced school lunch, college Pell grants, and individuals who have seen a loss of income due to the economic fallout since the beginning of the pandemic.  

Media & Democracy 10.27.2020

Common Cause Condemns FCC Net Neutrality Remand Order

Today, the FCC majority voted to approve an Order on Remand responding to questions raised by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on the agency’s 2017 net neutrality repeal. The Court’s remand highlights the many serious questions the FCC ignored in 2017 when repealing net neutrality including the impact to public safety, broadband competition, and affordable broadband for low-income consumers. The FCC’s Order on Remand concludes that the agency’s deregulation of broadband outweighs any harms to public safety, competition, and affordable broadband.

Voting & Elections 10.1.2020

House to Pass New COVID Relief Package, Senate Must Follow Suit

The House is poised to pass a modified COVID-19 relief package to provide assistance to Americans whose lives have been upended by the pandemic, and to bolster pillars of our democracy strained under the national health crisis. The Senate must act after refusing to move on a more robust relief package passed by the House in May. It is past time for Senate Republicans to move to help the American people instead of focusing on trying to ram through the confirmation of another Supreme Court Justice while ignoring the plight of their constituents.

Senate Republicans’ Bailout Focuses on Corporate Immunity While Undermining Census Count and Democracy Issues 

Americans expect and deserve elected representatives who put the interests of their constituents and the health of our democracy first – especially when both are threatened by a pandemic. But instead, the Senate Republicans’ long-overdue COVID-19 relief package undermines the accuracy of the 2020 census, gives corporations the immunity they’ve lobbied for, slashes weekly jobless aid, and short-changes our democracy all in one fell swoop. Senate foot-dragging on this relief package already allowed the eviction moratorium in the CARES Act to expire – likely adding disenfranchisement to the host of life-altering problems faced by thousands of newly-homeless Americans.

Media & Democracy 06.24.2020

Common Cause Commends Whip Clyburn, House Rural Broadband Task Force, and House Democrats on Comprehensive Broadband Bill

Today, House Majority Whip Clyburn and the House Rural Broadband Task Force along with leadership in the House Energy and Commerce Committee introduced the “Accessible, Affordable, Internet for All Act.” The comprehensive legislation provides $80 billion of funding for broadband deployment while enabling affordable options for broadband adoption, creating digital equity programs, enhancing data collection regarding the price and quality of broadband networks, and protecting community broadband.

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