broadband Internet

Pointing out America's inadequacies is a common tactic in U.S. presidential campaigns, but sometimes the jabs backfire. That happened this week to Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders when he took on Internet speeds in the U.S.

His observation Wednesday drew a flurry of annoyed responses on both sides of the Atlantic. Many Romanians rejected what they viewed as an implication their country — one of the poorest in the European Union — did not deserve having better internet than the United States.

And Claudia Ciobanu, a Romanian freelance journalist based in Poland, tweeted:

Jacob McCleland / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Millions of American students don’t have access to high speed internet at home, putting them at an educational disadvantage. On Wednesday, president Barack Obama began his two-day visit to Oklahoma by unveiling a new plan to bring internet service into low income households.

The president was met with applause and introduced himself with the Choctaw greeting “Halito” at Durant High School in the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.

Obama checked off some of the accomplishments under his administration --- like private sector job growth, a stronger housing market and more insured Americans. That, he said, is the good news.

“But I also made it clear when I came into office, even as we’re trying to make sure the entire economy recovers, we also have to pay attention to those communities that all too often have been neglected and fallen behind,” Obama said. “And as part of that, I said, ‘We’re going to do better by our First Americans. We’re going to do better.’”

A government program called Lifeline subsidizes basic phone service for low-income people. Now, the head of the Federal Communications Commission also wants to use the program to pay for broadband Internet connections, which many poor people lack.

When it comes to the Internet, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler says there are the haves and the have nots. Ninety-five percent of households with incomes over $150,000 a year have broadband access, he says. But just 48 percent of households making under $25,000 do.

Headlines for Monday, March 30, 2015:

  • Oklahoma teachers are coming to the State Capitol today for the 2015 Brighter Future education rally. (Tulsa World)

  • A new poll shows support for a teacher pay increase. (Tulsa World)

  • A new FEMA rule could change the amount of grant money awarded to Oklahoma. (NewsOK)

Updated Feb. 4, 11:52 a.m. ET: Wheeler Outlines His Proposal In Wired.

Today is the day net neutrality watchers had been waiting for, according to numerous reports. After months of debate, discussion and the culling of nearly 4 million public comments on the matter, the Federal Communications Commission appears poised to decide how it will regulate the Internet.

Updated at 4:48 p.m. ET

President Obama is expected to lay out plans today intended to make it easier for cities, towns and rural communities to offer their citizens fast and cheap broadband Internet.

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